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Alleged "Craigslist killer" teen faces murder charge

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Being accused of a crime is a serious matter, especially in the state of Texas, and in order reduce charges or eliminate prosecution altogether, one must combat a prosecutor's allegations. Implementing an element of criminal defense when one is facing a criminal conviction is a truly crucial approach.

This can be a difficult task when the accused has confessed to the purported crime. Such is the case for a Pennsylvania woman who recently claimed to have killed dozens of people. The woman, only 19 years old, claims to have participated with her husband in a substantial number of murders spanning Alaska to Texas to North Carolina and California.

Authorities are currently reviewing the details of the claims. While somewhat surprising, individuals in previous cases have admitted to murders they have not committed. This can often have to do with emotional imbalance or a call for attention when a person imagines they have nothing left to lose.

Yet, if authorities can corroborate any of the woman's story, she may be facing an uphill battle. Authorities are pushing to apply the death penalty to the woman's case. While a potential defense might focus on such a defendant's mental instability, only a verified medical examination could support such a claim.

Whatever the accusation, putting forth a thoughtful and vigorous defense is of monumental importance. A knowledgeable defense attorney will point out weaknesses in the prosecution's case, keep out irrelevant evidence and further ensure helpful witnesses are heard at trial. These efforts can sometimes avoid the need for trial altogether. Putting forth a strong defense may pressure a prosecutor to negotiate an acceptable plea deal on a criminal charge or even drop charges for an accused.

Source: Baxter Bulletin, "Police probe Craigslist teen's claims that she killed dozens in multiple states," Feb. 7, 2014

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