Do Witness's Inconsistent Statements Combined With Lack of Evidence Render His Testimony Insufficient to Convict An Individual ?

In People v. Brown, 303 Ill. App. 3d 949, 709 N.E.2d 609, 237 Ill. Dec. 354 (1999), the defendant was charged with a shooting. The only evidence linking the defendant to the crime was a statement made by a witness two years after the crime, and that statement was disavowed by the witness at the defendant's trial. Brown, 303 Ill. App. 3d at 965. In Brown, this court determined that because the witness's prior statement implicating the defendant was uncorroborated and was not made contemporaneously with the crime, it was insufficient as proof beyond a reasonable doubt. Brown, 303 Ill. App. 3d at 965. In People v. Wise, 205 Ill. App. 3d 1097, 563 N.E.2d 1057, 150 Ill. Dec. 930 (1990) the single accusing witness never called the police and gave two recantations disavowing his earlier statement that defendant had robbed him. This court found that the witness's inconsistent statements, combined with the complete lack of corroborative evidence, rendered the witness's testimony insufficient to support the defendant's conviction. Wise, 205 Ill. App. 3d at 1101.