Anyone who is charged with a crime, and brought before the courts in California, is presumed innocent. It’s up to the prosecution to prove that the person is guilty beyond reasonable doubt. This system always applies, in order to ensure that the accused is treated fairly.
So, what does the presumption of innocence mean for anyone who is on trial in the state of California? And how can reasonable doubt affect the final verdict?
What it means to be presumed innocent
Every defendant who steps into a courtroom is presumed innocent. This is the foundation for all trials. It’s then up to the prosecution to prove that they are not innocent. The prosecution uses a combination of evidence and witness testimony to try and prove that the defendant is guilty beyond reasonable doubt.
What does reasonable doubt mean?
It’s not necessary for there to be no doubt at all about presenting a guilty verdict in a case. What is necessary is for guilt to be proven “beyond reasonable doubt”. This means that the prosecution’s evidence should be sufficient to enable a reasonable person to find the defendant guilty. It could be that the evidence presented is not strong enough for this to be the case. When this happens, a not guilty verdict should be returned. In order to avoid this happening, the prosecution needs to concentrate on the quality of its case.
If you have been charged with a crime, and are due to appear in court in California, you need to hire a Pasadena Criminal Attorney. They can help you in your defense against the evidence that is presented by the prosecution, at your trial. They will try to convince the court that there is not sufficient evidence to prove that you are guilty beyond reasonable doubt.
The most important thing to remember about any defendant who is appearing in court is that they are presumed to be innocent at the start of the trial. Many high profile cases are tried in courts away from the area where the crime took place, in order to try and alleviate the issue of local bias. The jury has be able to see the defendant as innocent, and each individual juror needs to base their findings solely on the evidence that is presented during the trial.
This means that the prosecution needs to build a picture of guilt, using high quality evidence, and reliable witness testimony. If you are ever charged with a crime, your attorney should be able to spot any holes in the prosecution’s case, and highlight them to the jury. It’s their job to try and bring reasonable doubt into the equation. Once there is reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors, the only verdict that they should really give is not guilty. This is the only fair outcome if the guilt of a person has not been proven, to a level that is required by any reasonable person.