Bribe Offered to Witness Complicates Rape Case

He said She said case

What would you do for $30,000 in cash?

It is going to be another beautiful fall day with a high of 74 in Detroit. It is a perfect day to end the work week on. Today, we are examining at an alleged rape case out of San Jose. This is a “he said, she said” case that may come down to who to jury believes more.

The Trial

In April of 2011, Geoffrey Chambers, a 53-year-old male allegedly raped his 19-year-old female relative. The young woman quickly sent text messages about the encounter to her cousin.

The Prosecution

Fast-forward to today. While the prosecution sticks to the victim’s story, none of the text messages have been recovered, even by the phone company. In addition, the cousin is not being called to testify.

The Defense

The defense is operating on the idea that the young woman was ashamed of the encounter. However, during the alleged attack, she did not communicate any objections.

The Complication to the Rape Case

What has complicated this trial is that there was a bribe made to the witness. An unnamed woman flew to Detroit and offered a bribe of $30,000 in cash to the victim if she would not testify. The victim declined the offer. This offer creates numerous complications in the middle of the trial. Apparently, there is no evidence to support the thought that anyone involved in the trial knew about this alleged bribe.

According to the who reported on this case,

“Crafting the statement to the jury was a difficult balancing act. The idea was not to taint the defendant by association, since he may not have even known of the offer. The offer also doesn’t necessarily mean the person who made it believes Chambers is guilty; she may have believed in his innocence, but was afraid that he would be wrongfully convicted and sentenced up to 56 years in prison.”

This bribe may also play to the credibility of the witness, and in this “he said she said” case, the “she said” may be a little more believable to the jury now.

Being charged with criminal sexual conduct that involves a rape is a serious situation. Having a competent and experience criminal defense attorney in a situation like this is an absolute necessity even without complications. If you know of someone who is facing a rape charge, please have them contact my office at 248-348-7400 or 586-530-1000

What do you think? Do you think the bribe will make the defendant look guilty to the jury now? Or do you think that without the text messages and cousin’s witness the prosecution has no case?