A 37-year-old woman was indicted on a first-degree murder charge by a Missouri grand jury. The woman told police that she shot the 36-year-old victim while acting out a scene in a movie. She also acknowledged that she had consumed alcohol and was on several medications when she pointed a weapon at her boyfriend.
The grand jury in the case also indicted the woman on a charge of armed criminal action on Sept. 20. Authorities say that the defendant was originally charged with second-degree murder in connection with the incident that took place in March. The woman is expected to be arraigned on Oct. 15, and there was no explanation given as to why the grand jury decided to indict her on a more serious charge.
Individuals who are convicted of committing violent crimes could spend many years in prison. In some cases, they could spend the rest of their lives in custody. However, an attorney may be able to help a person avoid prison time or other potential consequences related to a murder conviction. This may be done by asserting that an individual committed an act by accident as opposed to doing so intentionally. Generally speaking, the law differentiates between acting recklessly and intentionally committing a crime.
An attorney may be able to take steps to weaken the case against a defendant. For instance, it may be possible to have witness testimony stricken or other evidence suppressed. Legal counsel will typically have the right to examine anyone who testifies for the prosecution. This may provide an opportunity to point out inconsistencies in what that individual has said in court, which may create reasonable doubt. A defendant must be found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt for a conviction to be obtained.