1. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    Does this count as a plot hole?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Ryan Elder, Dec 13, 2015.

    For my story a cop is on patrol, and while on doing so, he comes across what looks like to be a kidnapping in progress. He stops the kidnapping from happening. He rescues the victim and arrests one of them, but the rest get away.

    The victim does not want to testify though and wishes to not press charges.

    Because of this, the prosecutor feels that without her testimony, he can either subpoena her although she is very uncooperative, or he can drop the case. I wanted to write it so that he doesn't have enough of a case, but I was told by a reader so far that it's a plot hole.

    He says that the prosecutor does not need the victim's testimony, and they would go ahead with a case, using the cop's testimony only. But is one cop's testimony enough, to convict someone for attempted kidnapping, even though the victim is willing to come forth? Wouldn't the court, or a jury, want to hear from the victim, rather than just saying she was, without any claims from her to support it?

    Is it really a plot hole, and there still is enough of a case from the cop's testimony alone?
     
  2. Stephanie McGinnis
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    Stephanie McGinnis New Member

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    In certain cases it is true they do not need the victim's testimony. Sometimes its too hard for the victim to face their attacker, so it's very plausible for something to go off of a cop's testimony alone. Though for a kidnapping I'm not sure this is as true as for say an attack of some sort. In kidnapping cases they still may need the victim's story depending on the age. If it's a child they would probably not be brought up to the stand.
     
  3. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    Oh okay, well in this story, the victim is probably around her 30s, for sure, so is it realistic that they feel they could win the case, without her testimony entirely, and just rely on the cop saying what he saw?
     
  4. Stephanie McGinnis
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    Stephanie McGinnis New Member

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    The fact that she's older I want to say no. She would probably have to testify because of the age thing.
     
  5. Danny Michael
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    Danny Michael New Member

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    I'm not too clued up when it comes to law, although I did look this up a little as I found it interesting. The victim of a kidnapping in Vancouver, Canada refused to testify in court in 2013, leading to the case being adjourned. Perhaps more relevant may be a news article that I found on the Cleveland kidnapping case, reported around the time of the trial. It states that if the charges are contested by the kidnapper that the victims would all be required to testify, no matter how difficult that may be. Hope this helps a little.
     
  6. Stephanie McGinnis
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    Stephanie McGinnis New Member

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    So what you could do is use 'fake' cases in story to help support the fact that without the victims' story the case is dropped. There's always exceptions so you can always just make a few up to go along with the story. That way it wipes away any possibility of a plot hole. Or even have some character in the story state just what you stated above. Plot hole gone!
     
  7. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    Okay thanks. I thought that if I explained it, I would be insulting the reader's intelligence, but I can do it if necessary :).
     
  8. tristan.n
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    tristan.n Active Member

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    Did the kidnapping actually happen, or did the cop stop it before she was actually taken? If she wasn't officially kidnapped, and she won't testify, the perpetrator could easily say she was having a medical problem and he was trying to get her to the hospital or some other story. The cop would need more evidence--a medical exam afterwards that showed traces of chemicals on her, or any bruises or signs that she was trying to get away, or bystander testimonies, etc. (This is coming from my boyfriend, who is a lawyer.)
     
  9. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    She was currently tied up with a hood put over her head, when the cop finds her. But I have work out how the cop finds her while on patrol too, by accident, so these things are not official yet. The defendant chooses to keep silent and lets his lawyer do the talking, but would it be in the best interest for the lawyer to make up that it was a medical problem, in case the victim may change her mind later, or be compelled to testify of subpoenaed later?

    Also the perp was wearing a mask and gloves at the time, and the cops would have those as evidence.
     

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