Charged With Criminal Offense? Here’s What to Do?
Anyone would be shocked and panic when a criminal offense is charged against them. Some will feel fear and confusion, especially when they are innocent. Being charged with a crime does not mean that you do not have any legal remedies that you can afford.
In this case, the first thing that you must do is to calm down and do the following
Know What They are Charging You with and Why
The police indeed have the authority to arrest individuals. However, a probable cause must be present. A probable cause is a requirement under the law that refers to having enough reason to arrest someone who allegedly violated a law. Without probable cause, the police cannot arrest you or seize any property or belongings that you own.
It is better to inquire about why they are charging you with an offense because walking into the police station without any idea could lead to a more serious case. Who knows? The police might have done the arrest illegally or out of obedience from someone putting money in their pockets.
Know Your Rights
Refuse to search and ask for a warrant when a police officer comes to your door and tells you that you are being charged with a criminal offense. A great chance of evidence being tampered and planted on your property will be present when you let officers seize your belongings and search your house without a warrant.
Also, do not stay with the police for questioning unless they give you a valid reason or if they are detaining you with proper orders.
Invoke your right to remain silent. Do not do or say something that could incriminate you. Anything you say could be used against you, and it could further strengthen your charges. When the police start to question you and are trying to force you or trick you to talk, inform them that you will not be talking unless you are given a lawyer who can represent you, or when your lawyer is not yet with you.
This is one of your rights, and it is one of the best ways to protect yourself.
Hire a Good Lawyer
There will be a possibility that when you are charged with a criminal offense, you would not have any idea of what is going on. The law is complicated, and you need someone who has a better understanding of the law. In this case, hiring a lawyer is the best option. Hiring a good criminal defense lawyer is important when you are facing criminal charges against you as the lawyer can educate you about the law. A lawyer will tell you the status of your case and explain the possible circumstances that might happen. He would know how to present your best defense and to challenge the evidence presented by the other party.
Also, hiring a lawyer is always better than representing yourself, especially when you do not have any background in law. Even lawyers would prefer hiring a different attorney for their case when they are charged with a crime.
It is quite unbelievable but for some unknown reasons, some of the police are doing illegal arrests nowadays, so it is for your best interest to educate yourself of your rights and privileges just in case you get arrested for no reason.