Getting arrested or facing criminal charges is a stressful and hectic experience. Through following the tips below and with the help of a competent lawyer, you can successfully deal with the legal system.
Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent
The only thing you should ask the police is the straightforward question: am I under arrest? If you aren’t, then you have the right to leave. If you are under arrest, you have the constitutional right to remain silent until you have an attorney present during questioning. Police will naturally continue questioning and intimidate you with exaggerated legal consequences. Politely ignore them and wait for your lawyer.
Police officers may use unethical, but perfectly legal tactics to manipulate suspects into talking during interrogation. They might pretend to be friendly and offer to help you out by listening to your story. They will lay guilt trips on you while pretending to have hard evidence against you. They also will simply wear you down through hours of subtle harassment and deny food, drink and bathroom breaks. Be strong and exercise your right to remain silent without your lawyer present.
Retain an Attorney
Attorneys are legal advocates that can guide you through the confusing and complicated court system. They offer expertise, experiential knowledge and proven techniques to protect your rights. Their legal skills and understanding can save you from a criminal record and possible jail time. Hiring a competent lawyer is a must for anyone facing criminal charges. A Keyser defense attorney can discuss the best options for your case and provide valuable insight.
When you do make a statement through your lawyer, avoid lying or even polishing the truth to avoid being embarrassed. Honestly state exactly what happened and no more, no less. If you do lie, the prosecution and judge may use this against you and question everything that you have said.
Only Discuss Your Case With Your Lawyer
Any casual statement that you make to a friend, family member or even neighbor can and will be used against you in court. They can be subpoenaed and forced to honestly recount any statement you made while being cross examined by the prosecuting lawyer.
If it isn’t documented, it doesn’t exist. The legal system depends on accurate, documented information. Be sure to document everything that happened during your incident with as much detail as possible. The prosecution often undermines facts and witnesses through challenging minor details and implying inaccuracy through confusion over minor details.
In conclusion, if you are facing criminal charges, exercise your right to remain silent, be careful during the interrogation, retain an attorney, never lie, only discuss your case with your lawyer and be sure to document everything.
This article is courtesy of Anita Ginsburg, a freelance writer from Denver who often writes about home, family, law and business. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family when she isn’t writing.