Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP

Takakjian & Sitkoff Wins New Trial for Innocent Man Who Accepted Sex Crime Plea

Advised by original lawyer to accept child molestation plea deal, man was found by firm's investigators to be out of state on date of alleged crime, Takakjian & Sitkoff reports


Los Angeles, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 12/07/2015 -- Formerly serving a long sentence and facing lifetime registration as a sex offender, a previously convicted man was released from state prison and granted a new trial by a Los Angeles Superior Court Judge. Thanks to the hard work of the criminal defense attorneys at Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP, and over the vigorous objections of the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office, the man's guilty plea was thrown out after it was proved that he was in another state entirely when the sex crime in question was said to have taken place. One of a long string of positive results for the practice's clients, this recent Takakjian & Sitkoff victory gives a wrongly accused person a new chance at life even after the lawyer who first represented him convinced him to plead guilty.

"In an unfortunate number of cases, even innocent people feel compelled to plead guilty just to cut down on the severity of the charges they face," Takakjian & Sitkoff partner and Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer Paul Takakjian said, "We're proud to have been able to once again help an innocent man clear his name."

Many Americans assume that the typical way of resolving criminal charges is for the guilt or innocence of the accused to be assessed in court by a jury or judge. In reality, the vast majority of criminal charges today produce guilty pleas before trial, with at least four-fifths of all felony charges in California now being settled in this way. In many cases, prosecutors stack up charges to such an extent that lawyers advise even innocent clients to accept plea deals just to reduce the potential penalties they face.

That happened this year to a California man, his name withheld here to protect his privacy, who was charged with raping and molesting his niece five years ago. Accepting the advice of his lawyer at the time but fully aware of his innocence, the man pled guilty and was sentenced to a lengthy term in state prison with lifetime registration under the state's Sex Offender Tracking Program.

Engaged by the man's family after his sentencing, the Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys at Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP discovered in the course of their investigation that the man had been out of state in Louisiana when he was alleged to have committed the crime. With the Los Angeles District Attorney standing in firm opposition, Takakjian & Sitkoff's motion to have the man's plea withdrawn and the conviction overturned on the grounds of his factual innocence was granted by the presiding judge on Oct. 29. Immediately freed from prison and his name removed from the Sex Offender Tracking Program, the innocent man's life was turned around in a single stroke.

Although an especially dramatic victory, this story is representative of the kind of hard, dedicated, important work that the lawyers at Takakjian & Sitkoff consistently provide for their clients. Those needing a DUI lawyer in Los Angeles, a Los Angeles domestic violence lawyer, or help with any other criminal charges are encouraged to contact Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP for a free consultation.

About Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP
With extensive backgrounds as former senior prosecutors themselves, Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys Paul Takakjian and Stephen Sitkoff have each practiced criminal law in California for over 30 years and have been providing vigorous, effective criminal and DUI defense representation since 1987 in Los Angeles and throughout Southern California.