HOW CAN A PERSON UNDER 13 YEARS OLD BE BELIEVED WITHOUT ANY ADDITIONAL EVIDENCE?
It happens all the time. Because the law allows the state to proceed with their case based on the accuser’s testimony ALONE, all the state needs to produce is the accuser (no matter the age). Based on what the accuser states, the state can, and will, move forward with a warrant and charge the accused. At trial, the same rules apply. The state is required to produce the accuser. There is absolutely no other evidence, even if the accuser is under the age of 13, that is required for the prosecution to proceed.
Exception: If the accuser is too young to speak/articulate accusations and an eyewitness observed the crime, that eyewitness may be used for purposes of prosecution.
WHAT IS THE YOUNGEST A CHILD CAN BE TO TESTIFY?
Blank Law, PC has had children as young as 3 years old testify in Criminal Sexual Conduct Cases. Remember, in a jury trial, juries love little, cute, adorable kids! NO jury wants to believe a small child would make up such horrific accusations. Therefore, in order to effectively question a child under 15 years old, you must have a lawyer with special skills in how to talk to kids and a lot of experience at it.
Years ago, as part of the Sex Crimes Unit in Macomb County, Nicole was forensically trained on the proper way to talk to children. Nicole sat aside detectives, nurses, CPS workers, etc. to learn how to competently and effectively question children. Nicole successfully completed that training session and began using those skills immediately. For years, she has used those special learned skills from forensic training. She is certified in Forensic Training. Nicole has used those skills 1000s of times during interviews with children, questioning children in court and interpreting childrens’ interviews with others.
When faced with an accused who is under the legal age of 16, Blank Law, PC cannot stress the importance of having a lawyer who has the experience and knowledge Nicole has when it comes to questioning children.
BLANK LAW, PC EXAMPLES
FIRST DEGREE CRIMINAL SEXUAL CONDUCT – CHILD UNDER 13
Due to allegations by a 12 year old girl that her best friend’s dad had sexual intercourse with her, while her best friend was asleep right next to her, it was enough for the state to charge the accused with First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct.
A caregiver at a nursery was licking the vaginas of a five (5) year old girl and a six (6) year old girl. The state was able to charge multiple counts of First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct.
A child’s age may be shown by her testimony and testimony of her parents.