Cleveland, Ohio (PRWEB) July 17, 2012
Ronald Mitchell faced felony charges, in case number CR-11-553936, in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas for allegedly threatening Cleveland Police Officer Grasha with a firearm. The County Prosecutors assigned to the case argued that the use of deadly force was warranted because of Mr. Mitchell's actions. Mr. Mitchell claimed this never happened and proceeded to trial in front of a jury in the courtroom of the Honorable Richard McMonagle.
The docket reflects that over nineteen people were issued subpoenas for this matter, and that the jury entered verdicts of not guilty based upon the arguments of counsel and the evidence submitted in the trial.
Attorneys Jennifer Scott, Megan Patituce, and Sarah Wilinski of Patituce & Associates, LLC, represented Mr. Mitchell at trial. Attorney Scott used a combination of her experience, as a former prosecutor and as a defense attorney, and technology to demonstrate that the officer's story who committed the shooting was not possible in light of the other evidence. It is important to note that only two officers who were present claimed to see a weapon, all other officers testified that they did not see a weapon at all before the shooting.
The court record, and transcript, reflect that Officer Grasha of the Cleveland Police Department claimed that on August 24, 2011, Mr. Mitchell was observed running down Imperial Avenue in Cleveland, Ohio. Officer Grasha, and other officers, testified that Mr. Mitchell was running away from the police wearing sweatpants and other very baggy clothing. At one point Officer Grasha, and his partner, testified that Mr. Mitchell turned and pointed a gun at them - causing Officer Grasha to fire three shots at Mr. Mitchell. Mr. Mitchell was struck in his back by one of these shots, with the bullet exiting through his chest.
Attorneys Scott and Patituce quickly demonstrated that the Officer's testimony that the shot that struck the defendant in the back did not make sense. This was based heavily on the testimony of the forensic scientist testimony that the bullet definitely entered the back of the shirt and exited through the front.
Attorney Scott said, "The prosecutor tried to convince the jury that my job is to defend my client with no regard for the truth. This is insulting. My job as a criminal defense attorney is to protect the rights of individuals against the power of the government. All citizens are promised the protection of a criminal lawyer when the government accuses them of wrongdoing."
Attorney Scott further added, "Here the system worked - the jury saw through the story provided by the officer who shot Mr. Mitchell and properly acquitted him of all charges."
In the end Attorney Royster, the assistant Prosecutor handling the case for the government, conceded, in her final argument, that the officer did in fact shoot Mr. Mitchell in the back - however - she still urged a conviction because she felt that Mr. Mitchell probably pointed a firearm at the police.
Despite the fact that Assistant Prosecutor Royster accused Attorney Scott of misleading the jury, Attorney Scott lived up to her obligation as an officer of the court and her duty as criminal defense attorney. The jury rejected the argument put forth by the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office.
After more than two full days of deliberations the jury entered not-guilty verdicts as to two of the three counts, and a mistrial was declared on the issue of whether or not the defendant carried a concealed weapon.
Attorney Jennifer Scott is a Cleveland Federal Criminal Lawyer with Patituce & Associates, LLC. Megan Patituce is a Partner in the Firm working as a Cleveland Criminal Lawyer handling cases such as this.