Attorneys Neil Anderson and Marina Spencer scored a huge victory in Clark County Superior Court this month, winning not-guilty verdicts for a client accused of raping his stepdaughter.
If convicted the client, 57, would have likely spent the rest of his life in prison.
During closing argument of the three-day trial, Spencer emphasized that no one could corroborate the alleged victim’s account, not even the state’s witnesses.
Spencer also highlighted a quote from a state's witness, who testified the alleged victim "seemed so much more put together and not the mess you would think.”
Spencer argued to the jury this was a telling observation given the alleged victim had claimed she had been raped and molested every day for six years starting at the age of 11, yet never exhibited any signs of distress.
Spencer also implored the jury to think logically about the alleged victim’s testimony when she said her stepfather wanted it to be known that they were together in a relationship.
“Take a second and actually think about that logically,” Spencer said. “She testified that her 40, 50-year-old stepfather wanted it to be known that he was the boyfriend of a 13, 14-year-old? He wanted everyone in their community to know he was actively raping and molesting his 13-year-old stepdaughter? And yet, not a single state’s witness can testify to this? Not a single person that was around can say “Oh yeah, (the stepfather) and (the stepdaughter) were an item back when she was 13 or 14. I knew that was highly illegal, so I called the police and CPS.”
If you take that at face value, Spencer said, and assume the alleged victim is telling the truth, then there would have been an army of witnesses testifying the stepfather introduced himself as his stepdaughter’s boyfriend.
The client was charged with four counts of rape of a child and two counts of child molestation.
The jury acquitted him on the rape charges on July 13. Jurors were unable to reach an unanimous verdict on the child molestation charges, even after deliberating for eight hours.
Rather than go to trial again on the child molestation charges, a deputy prosecutor dismissed them July 27 after the client agreed to a no-contact order with his stepdaughter.
The case had been hanging over the client’s head for more than five years.