Best Prosecutors

Amanda Haines and Fernando Campoamor-Sanchez
In May, a D.C. jury found Ingmar Guandique guilty of one of the most notorious killings in the Washington area’s recent history: The murder of 24-year-old intern Chandra Levy. Levy’s body was found in Rock Creek Park after the young woman went missing in 2001. Though suspicion originally fell on then-Rep. Gary Condit, who was having an affair with Levy, authorities eventually charged Guandique, already serving a sentence in a California prison for attacking women in the park. But the police didn’t have much to go on. And when, in November 2010, Guandique went on trial, it was up to prosecutors Amanda Haines and Fernando Campoamor-Sanchez to make the charges stick. It wasn’t easy for the assistant U.S. attorneys. They lacked eyewitnesses or DNA evidence and had a case cobbled together from, among other flimsy sources, the testimony of jailhouse snitches. Still, they managed to get a conviction by doing what lawyers are taught to do in such situations: appealing to the jury’s emotions. “You know that what happened in those woods was ghastly,” Haines provocatively offered during closing arguments. Guandique is now serving a 60-year sentence.
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