After a long day’s work, M. Todd W. returned home to find his wife’s niece in his room. Todd became upset because he kept money in his room and had discussed this issue on previous occasions with his wife. An argument began and a physical confrontation ensued. Todd’s wife claimed that Todd punched her in the face, stomped on her foot, chased her out of the house, then grabbed her and slammed her to the ground, causing her to break her arm. Todd was arrested and charged with felony domestic battery.
I completed a scene investigation which included going to the scene, taking pictures and speaking with neighbors. The scene investigation is one of the ‘detailed’ things I do to get a full picture of what happened to cause my clients to be in their present situation. Oftentimes, the scene investigations yield important clues that lead to my clients’ exoneration.
In M Todd’s case, his neighbors provided a completely different version of the events that led to Michael Todd’s arrest than what was relayed by his wife. At trial, I argued that while a verbal dispute did occur, it was Todd’s wife, with the aid of her niece, who was the antagonist and the aggressor. One of the neighbors I spoke to when I visited the scene, came in and testified that Todd was being chased by his wife and she fell and injured her arm in the pursuit. Todd was acquitted.