If you have been accused of a crime, you may be able to increase your chances of staying out of jail by exerting your rights and avoiding some common mistakes.
Do Not Give Police Permission To Search
You may think you have nothing to hide, but that is no reason to give police permission to dig through your car, your home or your workplace. Remember, police are looking for anything they can use against you, and you may be surprised what can be used against you. Clearly say that you do not consent to the search. Make the police come back with a search warrant, if they can justify one.
Do Not Volunteer Evidence
Police may ask for anything from clothes to handwriting samples to bodily fluid samples. Again, they are looking for anything they can use against you. Do not listen if they tell you they are on your side and want to rule you out as a suspect. You do not have to provide these without a court order. Do not do their work for them.
Do Not Talk To The Police
You have the right to remain silent. Please use that right. Even if the police seem friendly. Even if you are only under investigation. Even if you have not been charged and they say they just want to talk. Even if they tell you they are on your side. Do not fall into the trap of trying to explain yourself or justify your actions. Anything you say can be used against you. You never know how your words may be twisted or misinterpreted.
Do Not Talk To Anyone About Your Case
Your right to remain silent extends beyond the police. Do not talk to friends, family members or coworkers about your case. All of these people can be questioned by the police. All of these people can be called as witnesses to testify against you under oath.
Do Not Plead Guilty
This may seem obvious, but many people plead guilty because they are convinced they have no other option. They think the evidence against them is too strong, and that they simply do not have a case. Had they discussed the matter with an experienced attorney, they may have seen that there were flaws in the case against them, and those flaws could have been used to obtain a better outcome.
Hire A Lawyer Immediately
Defending against criminal charges is no simple task. Criminal defense lawyers are trained in the law. They know your rights. They know how to protect them and what to do if they have been violated. They know about the wide array of options that may be available to you. Recognize that your future is on the line and make sure you entrust it to an advocate who is willing to work hard to keep you out of jail.
At the law office of Phillip A. Linder, we have more than 20 years of experience defending against everything from drug charges to white collar crime charges. We encourage you to get in touch with us for a free consultation as soon as police make contact with you.