Battery Causing Great Bodily Injury Dismissed on Eve of Trial

Posted by Ronald D. HeddingJul 19, 2020

I was trying a big California Penal Code 243(d) PC battery, causing a serious bodily injury case where my client was an Uber driver who kicked passengers out of his car because they were trying to jam five passengers in a vehicle that could not have five passengers.

One of the passengers challenged him to a fight, stepped outside, and my client, in defending himself, punched the guy in the face, and that caused him to break his nose, fall, hurt his head and get a concussion.

My client was ultimately charged with a felony battery, causing great bodily injury, a brutal crime, a string if he were to be found guilty.  We had indicated that he was innocent the whole time, so we ended up preparing for trial.

After doing the Preliminary Hearing in the case where they called one of the alleged victim's friends, who testified that the alleged victim challenged my client, went outside, and threw the first punch.

Battery Causing Great Bodily Injury in California

It's just one of those cases where the prosecutors don't look at their evidence clearly, don't realize they're going to lose the case because there's just such an enormous bureaucracy sometimes and just are looking at the injury involved to the alleged victim, not looking at what led to the injury.

There were some other surroundings they were trying to use against my client.  But the bottom line is this; once a deputy looked at it who was going to have tried the case against me, they realized they were going to lose, so they decided to go to their boss and say, I don't' want to try this case.  The guy's innocent. Our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys will review further below.

District Attorney's Office Dropped Charges

We should dismiss it.  So, ultimately, they ended up dismissing the case right before the trial, which is a shame because the client has to spend all that money to prepare the case for trial, has to go through the anguish of months of investigating the matter and thinking that he could potentially get convicted of a strike.

If a felony battery or great bodily injury is alleged, it can be a strike on the person's record. So, it was an excellent result for him.  I was glad to get the dismissal, and to me, that's just as good as a not guilty verdict at trial because the DAs don't dismiss cases unless they genuinely realize they're going to lose the case.  In this case, the writing was on the wall, and they were going to lose it.

There was another interesting issue.  Another attorney had the case before it was filed, and a senior police officer was investigating it. The other attorney had realized that there was a videotape of the incident.

So, instead of letting the senior police officer get their hands on that videotape, the other attorney filed some stupid civil-type motion to get the establishment that had the tape to preserve it. Of course, they didn't, so that video evidence was lost, and I remember getting on the case and speaking to the investigating officer and saying why didn't you get that tape.  He said we didn't realize there was a tape over there.  Suppose we had known that we would have got it.  So, that was just a bad strategy by the other attorney.

Lawyer's Track Record of Success and Client Reviews

There are a lot of attorneys out there that claim they can help people, and they know what they're doing.  Look at their track record of success.  Look at their reviews.  Look at how long they've been an attorney.  Look at their background.

I don't want somebody who has been prosecuting people for the last 10 to 15 years representing me in a criminal defense case.  I want a defense attorney.  I want someone who knows how to fight from their bootstraps and has been a defense attorney. It's straightforward to be a prosecutor where everything is handed to you.  It's not that easy to be a defense attorney and win cases.

So, look at the person's track record.  Think about who you want to fight your case for if you are going to fight the case and think about who you want to negotiate the case. So, if you have a severe battery case involving great bodily injury — something along those lines — it's right up my alley. 

I can help you.  Pick up the phone.  Make the call, and I will be there to do everything I can to get you out of the criminal justice system as fast as possible. Hedding Law Firm is a top-ranked criminal defense law firm in Los Angeles and offers a free case review by phone or fill out our contact form.