A 44-year-old Baton Rouge man was indicted by an East Baton Rouge Parish grand jury last Thursday on two counts of second-degree murder in connection with the 2007 shooting and burning deaths of two individuals. Both of the victims in the incident had been shot and were found in a burning care in West Baton Rouge Parish.
The case went unsolved until 2010, when the defendant was arrested on Crime Stoppers tips implicating him in the murders. He was initially charged in West Baton Rouge Parish, but the case was transferred to Baton Rouge on the belief that he shot the victims in Baton Rouge and later drove them to West Baton Rouge Parish.
The man faces an automatic sentence of life in prison if he is convicted of second-degree murder, making the case a critical one for him. Sources didn’t indicate whether the man has secured an attorney for the case.
Criminal indictments are an important part of serious cases, but they only represent criminal charges—that the grand jury found that there is sufficient evidence to issue criminal charges. Grand juries do not hear any evidence in defense of the suspect, as it is not their purpose to put on a trial before the actual trial.
It is important to note here that defense strategy can begin before an indictment is obtained. Those who are targeted in criminal investigations can work with an attorney to reduce their chances of being indicted.
In our next post, we’ll continue taking a look at this issue.
Source: The Advocate, “BR man indicted in 2007 double-murder,” Joe Gyan JR., June 9, 2013.