What You Need to Know If You Are Accused of a Crime

Being charged with a crime can be an absolutely terrifying and soul-crushing experience. It can ruin your reputation and put your future prospects in jeopardy. You may even be facing serious jail time.

However, being charged with a crime is not the end. You are not yet guilty of that crime. There are ways you can escape this situation and be pronounced innocent in a court of law. Below are some things you should know.

You Are Innocent Until Proven Guilty

The court system in the United States is special and provides those accused with crimes rights that are not afforded in some other countries. Anyone accused of a crime is presumed innocent until proven otherwise in a court of law. Just because you’ve been changed does not mean you will face jail time or other serious penalties. You still have the ability to prove to a judge and jury that you are innocent of those charges.

You Have the Right to Remain Silent

Another thing you should be aware of is that you have what are known as Miranda Rights. These include the right to remain silent and to not incriminate yourself to the police or others. If the police bring you in for questioning, you don’t have to answer a single question. Instead, the best course of action is to request to speak to an attorney. At that point, the police will stop questioning you as it is your right to invoke the privilege to have a lawyer represent you in all legal manners.

You Have the Right to Competent Legal Counsel

You may have seen accused criminals represent their selves in fictional TV shows. However, in reality, this is almost always a very bad move. There is a lot on the line in a criminal trial. This often includes your very freedom. Instead, seek out a competent criminal defense lawyer, such as Bruce Yerman Attorney At Law. Choose one with a track record of winning cases for clients that were charged with similar crimes. Work with that lawyer closely so they build a strong defense to present in court.

You Should Provide Your Attorney with All the Information You Can

You also need to cooperate with your lawyer to help build a strong defense. This may include telling your attorney where to obtain evidence that proves your innocence. It may be providing the names of witnesses that can back up your side of the story in court. Make sure to be helpful and completely forthcoming with your attorney. They have your best interest in mind.

Being charged with a crime is not an ending but only the beginning of a long legal process. There is a good chance you could come out of this process relatively unscathed. You are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law in the United States. Invoke your right to an attorney and try to find a good lawyer with experience in similar cases.

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Author: Lizzie W

Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and walks in the park with her three-year-old husky, Snowball. You can find her on Twitter @LizzieWeakley.