Facing a criminal accusation can be frightening and lonely. You’re facing an extremely serious situation but it’s embarassing to talk about and you’re not sure what you should do. Here are 5 important things you need to consider. Keeping these in mind won’t make it all magically go away, but it will make facing your accusation much easier.
- You have a right to remain silent – use it! Far too many people I see harm themselves by talking about their case to the police, to friends, to whomever. Protect yourself by keeping your mouth shut.
- When you’re being investigated, the police aren’t your friend. If you’re even possibly the target of a police investigation, put simply it’s the police’s job to make a case against you and put you in jail. You can’t trust that they’re “just trying to get your side of the story” or “just trying to get to the bottom of this.” Protect yourself and politely tell them that you’d like to consult a lawyer before speaking to them.
- Talk to a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible to devise a strategy.
- Take the time to organize your thoughts on what happened, who the possible witnesses are, and how your lawyer can get in contact with them. You help your lawyer (and therefore yourself) if your story of what happened is well organized and well documented. Don’t just go to your legal consultation unprepared and regurgitate what happened. Think it through, write it down, gather witnesses names & contact information as well as any documents that support you.
- Don’t delay. This isn’t just going to go away. Don’t stick your head in the sand. Nobody wants to have to deal with a criminal allegation, but ignoring it or putting it off will only put you behind the 8-ball. The quicker you consult a lawyer and start following their strategy, the better you protect yourself.
Need an experienced criminal defense lawyer in your corner? Call the Law Office of Mike Howard.