Something has happened, and now you’re facing criminal charges. Though your next course of action largely depends on the charges being held against you, there are still some common mistakes any defendant can make that might be detrimental to your case.
Whether you’re facing DUII allegations, a sex crime accusation, or any other criminal matter that requires an attorney, be sure you don’t make any of these five critical mistakes:
Mistake #1: Waiting Too Long to Hire a Lawyer
Though you may want to avoid the added expense of hiring a lawyer until you’re sure you need one, in the case of criminal charges, it is better to be safe than sorry. Hiring a lawyer quickly will provide you with the guidance you need to avoid future missteps that can worsen your sentence. Getting an early start will give your lawyer more time to build your case for the best defense possible in court.
Mistake #2: Providing Evidence
Though the average drunk driver has driven drunk 80 times before the first arrest, the police do not need to know about your previous activities! Do not provide evidence or statements related to this or any other crimes without guidance from a lawyer. Also do not submit samples of bodily fluids, fingerprints, and other evidence. Giving police any of these items voluntarily will make them admissible in court. You have the right to remain silent. Only speak to politely tell officers that you plan to wait to provide evidence once an attorney is present or they have a court-issued warrant.
Mistake #3: Resisting Arrest
No matter how frustrated or frightened you feel, do not resist arrest in any way. Physically resisting police officers will only worsen your case and result in additional criminal charges. Plus, a scuffle could lead to injury. Calmly follow police orders to protect your case.
Mistake #4: Contacting a Witness
Though you may mean no harm, do not contact your friend or anyone else who may have witnessed the crime you’re being accused of. Contacting a witness is illegal and considered witness tampering, which could ultimately hinder your defense to say the least.
Mistake #5: Withholding Information from your Lawyer
Finally, don’t try to lie or hide details of the scenario from your lawyer. Though you may be worried about seeming guilty or ashamed of what happened, your lawyer needs absolutely every detail possible to represent you in court. If your lawyer discovers new details during the trial, your entire case could be jeopardized. Be honest to protect yourself from further criminal charges and a worse sentence.
Criminal charges can be frightening and confusing. Though you may not know what to do after an accusation, be sure not to do any of the above.
For more information, contact Jared Justice today.