DA drops murder charges against suspect
CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Assistant District Attorney David Schmidt said dismissing murder charges against 18-year-old Prandel Reid was the best choice to make in the case at this time.
He said had the case gone to court and there wasn't a conviction, any chance to uncover the truth and bring closure to the family would be gone.
"That is why it is important to get it right the first time when we go to trial because usually there isn't a second chance," Schmidt said.
So how did Reid beat murder charges? Schmidt says it boiled down to evidence.
There wasn't enough of it at this time to place Reid as the killer.
Reid's defense attorney Jane Buffaloe, said she didn't believe he was killer from the start.
"Since I got the case I never felt like he could be involved in any way. I had my client's representation that he was not involved," Buffaloe said.
The State says it's not uncommon for serious charges to be dropped in cases like these, and that sometimes can lead to frustrations.
Schmidt said, "It does become frustrating because you know this individual will be out on the street and you know this could happen again and there is nothing you can do about it."
Buffaloe said, "He is a very young man and hopefully will learn from his mistakes."
Reid was given a six year sentence for evading police and four years probation for cocaine possession.
The victim's family did not want to comment.