There is no statute of limitations on some crimes, whether they’re committed in Missouri or elsewhere. Murder falls into that category. No matter when the murder was committed, if officials find the person they believe is responsible, there is no time limit restricting prosecutors from moving forward.
Officials recently arrested a Missouri man for a crime that allegedly happened almost two years ago. The charges revolve around the death of an area tattoo artist who had been reported missing. His body was recently found, hidden in a septic tank. A motive for the act has not yet been made public.
The man suspected in this incident recently waived his right to a preliminary hearing. He will now appear in court this spring, when his arraignment is scheduled. The man faces several felony charges that include witness tampering, second-degree murder and second-degree assault.
The man is not the only person facing charges in this incident. Another man has also been charged in connection with the death of the tattoo artist. In addition to a murder charge, he has pending drug charges. A third man has been charged for allegedly abandoning the body.
Understandably, murder charges are not something that can be taken lightly or swept under the rug and ignored until they go away. They won’t — even if substantial time passes between the event and charges being filed. The laws in Missouri and the rest of the country are clear on that point. Nevertheless, the passage of time may make it more difficult for prosecutors to meet the high measure of proof required of criminal proceedings. The prosecution will still have to prove every element of the crimes charged, regardless of the fact that witnesses to the alleged crime are no longer available or that their recollection of the event have become shrouded in the interim.
Source: Daily Journal, Waives preliminary hearing on murder charges, No author, Jan. 15, 2014