34-year-old Aisling Brady McCarthy (hereinafter, the “Defendant”) is one of the latest Massachusetts assault or murder defendants who are female.
The Defendant is also the second Irish nanny to be charged in Middlesex County in a high-profile murder case involving the death of a baby in her care. Last week, she was indicted on that matter.
Authorities say that a Middlesex County grand jury indicted the Defendant on charges of murder and assault and battery on a child causing bodily injury. They say she’s accused of “violently injuring” the child.
The baby was hospitalized with severe head injuries in January on her first birthday and died two days later. The Defendant had previously pleaded not guilty to assault and battery on a child. At the time, she was jailed on $500,000 bail while authorities awaited the baby’s autopsy results. Apparently, those results are in…along with and indictment to move the matter up to superior court.
Attorney Sam’s Take On Female Defendants
Last week we began the topic of female defendants and the new movement to reach out to young females to prevent such crime. We discussed one young lady who had been arrested for the stabbing of an apparent romantic rival with a butcher knife. We touched upon another 15-year-old girl who had been accused of being part of a mob who beet up an MBTA driver in Dorchester. Yet another such a case involved three girls who attacked a mutual former friend.
We have already discussed the various studies, statistics and beliefs as to the rise or fall of female-driven violent crime in the Commonwealth. We even reviewed my initial experience upon returning to Boston to continue my life in the criminal justice trenches.
“Yeah, it’s interesting and all, Sam, but what does it have to do with me?”
When I last left this topic, I mentioned that there was a difference in representing female defendants from male defendants. Of course, to be honest, just as each case is different, each client is different. However, there are some differences that are useful for you, someone who might either be or know someone who is, a female criminal defendant.
As mentioned last week, the days that women are not likely to be “given a break”, per se, simply because they are female, are at an end. By this I am referring to whether or not they will be prosecuted and face the same charges as their male counter-parts.
However, there are still certain prejudices and perceptions that can work in such a defendant’s favor if addressed correctly.
For example, many women have children. In fact, many are single mothers. Clearly, if mommy is the only source of support at home, that will be taken into account when it comes to plea bargaining and sentencing. Further, there has been a prejudice that women are, by nature, less violent than men which can aid in decisions regarding bail and dangerousness issues. This, however, is changing. In cases such as those above, when there is no mistaking who the alleged violent defendant is, issues of sex will be put aside.
I still find that law enforcement is quicker to decide guilt on the part of a male suspect than a female suspect. They are also ready to believe that the poor woman is being manipulated by the more evil male. Thus, you often hear that women involved in gang-related crimes are merely trying to show their loyalty to their male counter-parts in the gang.
“Again, very interesting. How does this effect me?”
There is no criminal specialty of female-related crimes. However, an experienced criminal defense attorney has likely dealt with the female-related issues and knows how to use them for the client’s best interests. On the flip side, of course, such an attorney knows what to expect if a co-defendant or complainant is female in cases where the sex issue is important.
It is yet another reason why it is important, particularly in crimes of violence to have experienced counsel in your corner. Someone who has dealt with similar issues again and again and again. Nothing is stagnant. Simply because you find someone who has dealt with such issues 15 years ago does not mean that the lawyer knows how such issues tend to play out today.
And unless you or yours have been arrested during time travel….today is what matters.
Because when it comes to the criminal justice system, what happens today will determine your life tomorrow.
For the original story upon which this blog was based, please go to http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/04/12/irish-nanny-indicted-on-murder-charge-in-death-mass-baby-who-was-violently/#ixzz2QdlyMYlw