Former OPD Officer William Escobar Found Not Guilty
William Escobar was charged with two counts of battery and two counts of perjury. These charges related to the actions of Officer Escobar as he tried to take Mr. Refus Holloway into custody. “I am glad that Mr. William Escobar got his day in court and he got the exoneration he deserves,” states Mark Horwitz after the five-day trial.
Officer William Escobar and his partner Officer Joel Williams responded to a call for a fight in a high crime area of Orlando. While attempting to handcuff one of the individuals involved in the fight, a group of people were ordered to stay back. Mr. Holloway stepped out of the crowd and continued to approach Officer Williams in spite of his commands to get back. After being kicked in the abdomen, Mr. Holloway grabbed Officer Williams’ foot, causing him to lose balance. After witnessing these events, Officer Escobar assisted his partner and attempted to put handcuffs on Mr. Holloway.
Officer Escobar testified that Mr. Holloway kicked him as he approached and attempted to handcuff him. There were two separate video recordings of the incident that started at about the same time. The prosecution contended that both videos clearly showed Mr. Holloway being totally compliant. The problem with these videos is that they do not show the full story.
The prosecutor contended that Mr. Holloway was approached by Officer Joel Williams and was kicked for no reason. Mr. Holloway testified that he never grabbed Officer Williams’ foot and that he was totally compliant lying flat, except that he had to roll to his side in order to breathe.
Defense counsel was able to use the recordings to contradict Mr. Holloway by showing the jury the video recording frame by frame. Comments were caught on a third officer’s body cam in which Mr. Holloway states that he grabbed Officer Williams’ foot and was sorry that he fought that night. Both the statements were contrary to Mr. Holloway’s testimony, ultimately resulting in Officer Escobar’s acquittal on all charges.
“I worked with both Mark Horwitz and Bennett Ford from the first day forward in dealing with my case… Most importantly, they believed me and believed in me. They knew that my situation was an unfortunate situation that had to be fought, and they both knew that it would be a difficult case, considering all the media attention that my case received, but they were still willing to accept the challenge and fight for my freedom,” wrote Officer Escobar.
If you have been charged with a crime, contact the Orlando criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark L. Horwitz today.