Conviction is Reversed for Double-Jeopardy in Jefferson County, Alabama

Can you be charged a convicted for multiple counts of the same crime? Sometimes a prosecutor will charge the same criminal conduct in more than one count to ensure a conviction. A prosecutor will do this with the intention that a defendant will plead guilty to one count to prevent a trial. Fortunately, the Defendant in this case had good appellate counsel.

In the case at hand, the Defendant, Campbell, was charged with multiple counts in tow different cases of first degree sodomy, and deviant sexual intercourse, Campbell v. State of Alabama. The victim testified that the Defendant married his mother when he was none and began physically abusing him. The victim testified that the Defendant performed oral sex on him and eventually penetrated him. The victim was removed from the home when he was 13 years of age.

At the conclusion of the trial, the state asked for a “unanimity charge for the jury.” The jury had to find beyond a reasonable doubt that each of the separate acts that the Defendant was charged with occurred. The jury found Campbell guilty of two counts of first-degree sodomy. Campbell received two (20) years sentences for the cases.

On appeal, Campbell argued that the acts were one and the same and the guilty verdict was double jeopardy. The appellate court agreed, double-jeopardy principles were violated when Campbell was convicted of two counts of the same crime. The appellate court remanded the case back to Jefferson County Criminal Court to vacate one of the counts of sodomy.

If you are charged with a crime and need a criminal lawyer, contact Ingram Law LLC, at (205) 335-2640.