Recently, the Michigan Court of Appeals upheld the conviction and sentence of 47-year-old Robert Clinton Giamporcaro, who was accused of assaulting his girlfriend and her son in December of 2011. Giamporcaro was charged with three counts of felonious assault, and two counts each of interfering with electronic communications and domestic violence, according to news reports at Livingston Daily.
At trial, testimony revealed that Giamporcaro’s girlfriend attempted to leave the home the two shared when the defendant picked her up and threw her across a table. Giamporcaro also allegedly broke two cell phones when his girlfriend attempted to call for help, and punched her in the face repeatedly on the same evening. When the woman’s son tried to help her, the defendant allegedly picked him up by his throat and flung him into the dining room. Court documents also indicate that at one point during the altercation, the defendant took out a knife and told the two that, “Tonight, we all die.”
After being found guilty, Giamporcaro was sentenced to 58 months to 15 years in prison on the assault and interfering with electronic communications charges.
In his appeal, Giamporcaro argued that the conviction violated due process protections due to lack of sufficient evidence. He also argued that the trial court erred when the judge denied his motion for a directed not-guilty verdict.
The appeals court did not agree with the defendant’s arguments, finding that both the knife and the stool were dangerous weapons, and that the testimony of the woman and her son were proof enough for the jury to determine both victims were afraid of immediate battery.
The appeals court also ruled that in denying a direct verdict, the trial judge did not err as although it was argued there were discrepancies between the mother and son’s testimony, it was ultimately the responsibility of the jury to determine the credibility of the witnesses testimony.
There is no doubt that often times, an individual accused of assault or domestic violence is guilty; however, Michigan criminal appeals attorneys also know that much like is often the case in sex crimes, innocent people may be accused of crimes they did not commit. Relationships often result in volatile situations in which one partner alleges violence against the other when it is actually not the case.
Winning an appeal of a conviction and/or sentence is not easy, and requires the expertise and hands-on experience of a skilled criminal appeals lawyer. Anyone who has been wrongly convicted or believes errors were made during the criminal justice process should consult with an attorney who will thoroughly review your case to determine if you may have solid grounds on which to appeal.