In a recent case involving grand larceny in the Commonwealth of Virginia, the defendant successfully appealed his guilty conviction by arguing that the Commonwealth lacked sufficient evidence to prove him guilty. After agreeing with the defendant’s main argument, the court of appeals vacated his conviction and dismissed his indictment.
Facts of the Case
According to the opinion, the defendant was working as a general contractor for a school in Norfolk when he was criminally charged. As part of his work, the defendant was installing a fire suppression system and was going to the construction site regularly to perform his duties. Around that time, an individual stole tools from a large brown box, and the police later named the defendant as a suspect in this theft. He was charged and, eventually, his case went to trial.
The primary evidence the prosecution presented at trial was a surveillance video that supposedly showed the theft in question. The video showed a man reaching into the box, lifting tools from the box, and putting the tools in the bag. The video did not show how many tools, or which tools exactly, were placed into the bag. The prosecution clearly established that the defendant was the person in the surveillance video.