Can a person be convicted of a crime withjust a signed testimony as the only evidence?

UPDATED: Nov 14, 2011

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Can a person be convicted of a crime withjust a signed testimony as the only evidence?

My son (17) has upset a young girl and she has filed a report claiming he raped her. He was arrested on aggravated sexual assault of a child and had to be bonded out. Can a person be charged and convictedof this crime simply with a signed testimony by the accuser? Isn’t that hearsay?

Asked on November 14, 2011 under Criminal Law, Texas


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If your son has been arrested for crime, a felony, he needs to consult with an expereineced criminal defense attorney even though he is a minor. There is a chance that he could be tried as an adult. If convicted, he could receive a long jail sentence and be required to register as a sex offender.

Your son cannot be convicted at an actual trial based upon written testimony of the accuser. She would have to show in court and give live testimony. Your son has the right not to testify based upon his 5th Amendment Privilege. Your son can be charged with a crime based upon the signed statement of the accuser.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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