Being charged with a crime in Virginia can have long-lasting consequences, so it is important that a person's Constitutional rights are upheld at every stage in the criminal trial process. This means that every person is innocent until proven guilty, and guilt must be proven "beyond a reasonable doubt." If the prosecution doesn't meet this standard, then the charges must be dropped, as one recent case shows.
A Virginia judge had been charged with misdemeanor assault after allegedly grabbing a worker at an area Walmart. The incident began when the accused found some jewelry in the Walmart parking lot. He returned the items to a worker at Walmart and requested a written receipt so he could claim the items if the original owner failed to do so. The worker refused to give the judge the receipt. It was then that he allegedly reached over the counter to try to retrieve the items, and in the process momentarily grasped the worker's hands.
In the end, though, the assault charge against the accused were dropped. The prosecution claimed that the incident did not merit prosecution. Therefore, the judge will face no more legal consequences from the alleged altercation.
As this shows, sometimes a case simply does not pass legal muster for prosecution, and the charges against the accused must be dropped. Determining whether this should happen is an important part of anyone's criminal defense strategy. Therefore, those who are facing criminal charges may want to work with an attorney, to see if the charges against them are meritless and should be dropped.
Source: Richmond Times-Dispatch, "Assault charge dropped against judge in Walmart altercation," Sept. 28, 2017