Defense attorneys are constantly on the lookout for evidence of police and prosecutors discriminating against defendants on the grounds of race or gender.
This was demonstrated at a recent trial of a man from Prosper when defense attorneys claimed Garrick White from McKinney was singled out because he is black.
A jury determined that Garrick White committed a crime when he received oral sex from a 13-year-old girl last April. He was 17 at the time, the Dallas Morning News reported.
White’s family and defense attorney claimed he was singled out and prosecuted. They claimed the prosecution was racially motivated because he is black while others who were white were not prosecuted.
White was one of four to be originally arrested. The grand jury refused to indict the other three.
“I believe he was railroaded,” said the teen’s mother, Marilyn White.
“White was sentenced to five years on the charge of aggravated sexual assault of a child and two years on indecency with a child. Those were the charges on which the jury found him guilty,’ reported the Dallas Morning News.
White received two years on each of two counts of unlawful restraint of a child. All of the sentences will run concurrently.
As part of the plea agreement, prosecutor Crystal Levonius admitted into evidence group sex acts in which girls were incapacitated, the Dallas Morning News reported.
Text messages from White’s cell phone were also admitted into the evidence as well as telephone conversations recorded while he has been in jail in which he said he made three girls pregnant.
Levonius said two of the girls had abortions, and a third attempted to abort her baby by drinking excessive amounts of alcohol.
She denied that race played any part in the case and said the evidence against White was clear. “The case was about evidence, and the notion that it was based on anything else is ridiculous,” she said.
Defense lawyers said jurors were put in an impossible situation and followed the letter of the law, which states that a 13-year-old cannot consent to sexual activity with an adult. In Texas a 17-year-old is considered an adult under the criminal law.
The case illustrates how complex sexual assault cases can be and the need for an experienced criminal defense attorney.