Jaime Flores-Carbajal, a man accused of taking video up the skirt of a woman at Walmart, has been found not guilty by a six-person jury.
Flores-Carbajal lost his job as a janitor with the Ignacio School District in the fallout of the allegations, said Durango defense lawyer Brian Schowalter with Whitney & Schowalter.
“After having his life turned upside because of wrongful accusations that were sexual in nature,” Schowalter said in an email, “people need to know he was vindicated by a jury.”
The Ignacio man was accused of filming up the skirt of a woman while standing next to her in the greeting card section at Walmart with a cellphone in his hand, positioning it below the level of the woman’s skirt, according to an arrest affidavit. The woman could see the phone was recording in video mode, she told police.
Flores-Carbajal was charged with attempted invasion of privacy for sexual gratification, a misdemeanor punishable by six to 24 months in jail and/or a fine of $500 to $5,000.
District Attorney Christian Champagne said prosecutors pursued the case as a matter of public safety: If someone alleges his or her privacy is compromised for sexual gratification, it is the duty of the District Attorney’s Office to prosecute the allegation.
“That’s not acceptable behavior, if it’s true,” Champagne said.
But only one person, the alleged victim, testified in support of the allegations, Schowalter said in an interview, and there was no corroborating evidence to show that Flores-Carbajal committed the crime.
“As a defense attorney, it’s really concerning when people’s liberty and freedom and nasty allegations like this are put out there based solely on one person’s word,” he said. “I think if this had happened, there would have been some corroboration.”