evidence while not directly establishing guilt gives rise to an inference of

Evidence while not directly establishing guilt gives

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evidence, while not directly establishing guilt, gives rise to an inference of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. (Source: NY Criminal Jury Instructions). NOTE : The law draws no distinction between circumstantial evidence and direct evidence in terms of weight or importance. Either type of evidence may be enough to establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, depending on the facts of the case as the fact-finder (a judge or a jury) finds them to be. [Source: NY Criminal Jury Instructions].
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50 11/19/14
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51 11/19/14 MOCK TRIAL CASE SUMMARY MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS BOOSTER CLUB, INC. v. CASEY CHEATHAM 1. In recent years, the Morningside Heights Central School District (the “Morningside Heights District”), like others throughout New York State, has been challenged to fund academic, athletic, and extracurricular programs for its students in the face of rising costs and the sensitivity of the members of its Board of Education to raising property taxes. As a consequence, the Morningside Heights District adopted for the 2013-2014 school year a budget that eliminated numerous athletic teams and clubs, including Morningside Heights High School’s award-winning Mock Trial Team. 2. In response to this funding crisis, a group of influential business owners led by Peyton Pearson, the deep-pocketed owner of the Pearson Precision Corp., and the largest property taxpayer in the Morningside Heights District created the Morningside Heights Booster Club, Inc., a not-for-profit, tax-exempt corporation pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. 3. Drafted by Peyton Pearson, the Club’s by-laws assigned the role of governance over the Booster Club to a three-person Board of Directors, including a President, a Vice President, and a Secretary. Upon the creation of the Booster Club, its initial complement of members elected Pearson the Club’s first President on May 15, 2013. The Club’s members likewise elected Alex Aldrich and Fran Farley, two other prominent businesspeople, as the Club’s first Vice President and its first Secretary, respectively. 4. The three Directors of the Booster Club met for the first time on June 1, 2013, at the offices of the Pearson Precision Corp. Hopeful that the Club would raise enough money to restore funding for the eliminated extracurricular activities in the Morningside Heights District, the Directors decided that the Club needed to retain a Treasurer who could keep track of donations to the Club and ensure those funds’ appropriate expenditure. Peyton Pearson recommended that the Club hire Casey Cheatham, the Pearson Precision Corp.’s trusted Chief Financial Officer, as the Club’s Treasurer. The Directors voted unanimously to do so and to pay
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52 11/19/14 Cheatham a $12,000 annual stipend, even though Alex expressed misgivings about Casey’s honesty, based upon his/her knowledge of complaining by Casey’s former spouse. In the weeks that followed, the Directors created a page dedicated to the Booster Club’s activities on Face Space, a social networking website. Casey Cheatham was a member of Face Space, and he
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