The Stand

Last week a YouTube comment was made by someone with the username “Sean Brijmohan.” The video was in reference to Metro-State Special Services.

Sean Brijmohan was one of Steven Negron’s co-defendants in a 2018 extortion case in Orange County, Florida. Constantine Tanada was also a co-defendant in the case. The three men were Metro-State Special Services employees.

One of the witnesses for the State was someone named “Jeremy Dewitt.” A man named “J” contacted an agent during the initial investigation into the crimes and stated he was the employer for the three men.

Before and after the alleged crime text messages were exchanged.

Steven Negron and Sean Brijmohan made plans to go to the hookah bar that night.

After the alleged crime was committed Constantine Tanada texted Steven Negron and claimed it was a prank and he placed the blame on Sean Brijmohan. It appears the friendship between Negron and Brijmohan never recovered.

Steven Negron is currently a witness for the State in at least two of the eleven felony cases against alleged police impersonator Jeremy Dewitte.

There has also been speculation that Jeremy Dewitte will attempt to take the stand in his defense.

It has been found that most jurors believe if you are innocent you will take the stand and defend yourself. Leaving unanswered questions up to the jury has been shown to be detrimental in criminal cases.

A defendant’s likability, temperament and criminal history are things to consider before a defendant takes the stand. A defendant’s criminal history is usually not disclosed. However prior crimes are not excluded as evidence if the defendant takes the stand.

Surprisingly disclosing a criminal record is better than remaining silent. During a mock murder case in Massachusetts the defendant had a prior conviction and refused to testify. In the notes left by the jury the jurors claimed his refusal to testify suggested he had something to hide.

“Why would you not get up there and defend yourself?” was another common statement made in the notes.

In another scenario the jurors said they respected the defendant’s decision not to speak versus a defendant who testified but refused to answer specific questions.

During a mock robbery case there were four scenarios. In Scenario 1 the defendant did not testify and had no prior convictions. Seventy-six percent found him guilty.

In Scenario 2 the defendant testified and was not impeached with any prior convictions. Sixty-two percent found him guilty.

In Scenario 3 the defendant testified and was impeached with a criminal fraud conviction. Seventy-three percent found him guilty.

In Scenario 4 the defendant testified and was impeached with a robbery conviction. Eighty-three percent found him guilty.

Prior convictions negatively impacted the defendant’s chances for acquittal. The prior convictions showed the jury the defendant’s character and crimes of dishonesty or violence were the most damaging.

But even defendants without prior convictions were more likely to be found guilty if they did not testify. Forty percent were found guilty if they testified while seventy percent were found guilty if they didn’t.

Racial disparities were not taken into account during the mock cases. Neither were any guilty pleas which are offered in 90% of American court cases. Statistically defendants without prior convictions are usually the only defendants believed to be innocent before they are proven guilty.

***Thank you to Casual Observer for the additional information on Sean Brijmohan.