Reports are that a robber in Rochester was wearing a zebra-print dress at the time of his alleged crime. This eye-catching tidbit of information in the news may create a less serious perception of the charges filed against an alleged bank robber. Publicity surrounding a criminal arrest can be detrimental to the person who has been arrested. It can also work against the prosecution. Since each property crime is unique, portraying the facts in the best light for the defendant is important.
In this case, reports are a local man has been charged in Rochester with felony robbery. It is a very serious charge. While costumed in women's clothing, he allegedly passed a note to a bank teller. Initial reports are that he didn't brandish a weapon, but police are still investigating whether or not he had one.
Records show a decades-long criminal history that includes several convictions in New Hampshire and three other states. The 46-year-old was served with the current arrest warrant while in jail on a probation violation. He was arraigned by video appearance. Bail was set at $10,000 cash. The next step will be a probable cause hearing.
The arrest, according to reports, appears to be by the book and uneventful. But one of the most important tasks a criminal defense attorney undertakes is following police and justice system procedures to be sure a defendant's rights are fully protected during the process. It is this advocacy that helps keep our system working properly.
In mounting a defense, experience and skill lead to determining whether the charges can be defeated or if lessening the penalty is a better goal. When investigation reveals, as it is reported here, that previous criminal trespass, assault, drug possession and other criminal charges are part of a defendant's history, it might be that strong negotiation skills with prosecutors will result in a better outcome.
Source: New Hampshire Union Leader, "Man charged with robbing Rochester bank while wearing zebra-print dress is arraigned" Andrea Bulfinch, Oct. 29, 2014