How Strong Is an Alibi Defense?

by | Sep 20, 2021

Alibi defenses are powerful when investigators can verify the alibi. However, it is not easy to prove one in some cases. Criminal defense lawyers can help you prove your alibi while complying with the local court’s notice and evidence rules.

In this post, I define what an alibi defense is, an example of one I recently used in a case, and how you can make your alibi stronger.

What Is an Alibi Defense?

An alibi defense is a type of legal strategy used by Defendants when charged with a crime. Essentially, their defense is that they couldn’t have committed the crime since they were with someone else or in another location when it happened. You can use an alibi defense if you have one and are erroneously charged with a crime.

Example of an Alibi Defense

As a Philadelphia criminal defense lawyer, I utilize alibi defenses, where appropriate for client cases.

I recently represented Michael Naessens, a 56-year-old man charged with making terroristic threats. He stood accused of sending threatening messages to area people, including two Philadelphia judges!

The police rightfully concluded that the threatening messages were sent through an online card sending service called Postable. However, they wrongfully concluded that my client was the source sending them, a fact they should have verified in the first place.

Postable allows people to order and send physical greeting cards with custom messages. In this case, the sender was in Dearborn, Michigan, and my client was in Las Vegas, Nevada at the time of the crime.

Unfortunately, Mr. Naessens had no one to corroborate his location-based alibi. So, my law firm hired a digital forensics firm and completed an investigation based on data from his computers and the online applications he used regularly. The investigation concluded that he was in Las Vegas, Nevada at the time the crime was committed, not in Dearborn, Michigan, and therefore he was not the person who sent the messages.

To read the entire September 17, 2021 feature news story, check out The former owner of an Old City tavern has been cleared of sending threatening letters to judges and others in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

How Can I Make My Alibi Stronger?

Make your alibi stronger by hiring a criminal defense lawyer. Certain prosecutorial notice and evidence rules apply to alibis, and an attorney can help you navigate these complexities while avoiding legal mistakes.

In the preceding alibi defense example, my firm had to get creative and exhaust our digital resources to prove and authenticate his innocence. He wouldn’t have been able to carry out this strategy from a jail cell or at home without computer access.

Always get legal help when things look bad, and by that, I mean when you’re being investigated, questioned, charged, or arrested, regardless of your alibi.

Were You Charged with a Crime in Pennsylvania or New Jersey?

If so, I can help, and I’m not afraid of taking on tough cases, either. Put an innovative and experienced criminal defense lawyer on your side by contacting me at Shuttleworth Law PC for a Free Case Evaluation. Call 215-774-1371 or message me here directly to request yours today.

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