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How does an alibi defense work?

On Behalf of | Jan 31, 2023 | Criminal Defense |

Being charged with a criminal offense is a big deal. Depending on the crime you are charged with, a conviction can result in fines or even jail time. Ideally, you hope to overcome the charges in court.

One of the defense options you can consider when charged with a crime is showing that you have an alibi. But what is an alibi defense, and how can you raise one?

Understanding alibi defenses

Basically, an alibi is a legal defense in which you present evidence that you couldn’t have committed a certain crime because you were somewhere else when it happened. 

An alibi defense goes after the foundation of the prosecution’s case: the defendant’s identity. If you can cast reasonable doubt on the prosecution’s claim that you were the perpetrator of the crime, then the court might not find you guilty. 

To claim a strong and effective alibi, you will need to establish the following elements:

  • You were not physically present at the crime scene when the alleged crime happened
  • You had no reasonable opportunity to commit the offense
  • It is not practically possible that you committed the offense 

How do you raise an alibi?

Here are some of the evidence you can cite when claiming an alibi as your defense:

  1. Eyewitnesses who can give credible accounts of your location when the alleged crime happened. The jury may give more weight to the testimony of someone who has no stake in the issue, like a bystander or shopkeeper, as opposed to your spouse or parent.
  2. Time-stamped shopping receipts, bus, train or plane tickets, employer records or surveillance footage can all help you establish that you were too far away from the scene at the time the crime was committed.

An alibi is a strong defense if you are charged with a crime that you did not commit. Find out how you can raise a strong alibi when charged with a crime in Kentucky.