When dealing with the American system of criminal law, people want to think that they can simply rely on the notion that the truth will be their shield. Anyone who has ever worked at a criminal law services firm, though, will tell you that the system is littered with shortcomings. Understanding some of the sneakier parts of the system will give you a fair chance.
It's Not a Game
If you have ever watched the depiction of criminal law on TV or in movies, you can get the impression that police and prosecutors are playing by the rules of a tightly refereed game. For example, you might see a scene in a cop drama where an entire case gets tossed because of some minor procedural miscue on how evidence was handled. Or you may have watched a clever lawyer show where a citation of a specific Supreme Court precedent blows an entire case up.
Judges do sincerely care about how the cops, DAs, and lab technicians all handle their jobs. The "but" in all of this, though, is that a case rarely hinges on one key piece of evidence or one legal argument that can be readily removed. Even if there are questions about how evidence was obtained, it doesn't dynamite the whole case.
At best, the prosecution simply won't be able to present that evidence. The cops are encouraged to gather lots of evidence. There's a reason that during a traffic stop they make a point of having you do multiple motor-skills tasks and a breathalyzer. They also can pile on with a blood test conducted with a warrant, if necessary.
Keep Your Mouth Shut
The police legally have a surprising amount of room to fudge around your right to remain silent. Yes, they have to inform you of your right to remain silent. And, yes, they have to allow you to obtain counsel if requested.
Oddly enough, the cops are allowed to keep gabbing with you while you wait for your lawyer to show up. They're also known to lie in order to see if you'll mess up your story.
You're Likely Not Going to Trial
The vast majority of cases end in dismissals, guilty pleas, or plea deals. In fact, 94% of cases that are charged end in plea bargains. If you beat a charge, it will most likely be early in the process and with counsel's help.
Contact a criminal law firm like Johnson Motinger Greenwood Law Firm for more information or assistance.Share
3 January 2019
Few things are more frustrating than being accused of a crime that you didn't commit. I found myself in this difficult situation a few years ago when I was with a friend who broke the law. However, I knew that I didn't do anything, which is why I hired an experienced criminal attorney to help me out. He carefully reviewed my case, talked with me about what court would be like, and helped me to wrap my head around the different punishments I might face. He helped to prove my innocence, and I decided to set up this blog to help other people to understand the importance of working with a professional.