Being accused of a crime is always scary. However, you have several rights that will protect you as long as you cooperate with the police officers and do everything right on your end. These are some of the rights you have:
The Right to Remain Silent
You don’t have to say things that incriminate you, even if you cooperate with the officers. The arresting party and the prosecution can use any words you say against you. Therefore, you should wait until you have an adequate criminal defense set up before you say anything that could hurt you.
The Right to Obtain Representation
You have the right to obtain an attorney for criminal cases, and you should exercise that right if you ever get arrested. Take some time to learn all about criminal lawyers and then search for the best lawyer for criminal cases. The right attorney will try to get the case dismissed from the very beginning. That person will also fight for your rights if the case proceeds after that.
The Right to Be Read Your Rights
Don’t forget that an arresting officer must read your rights to you for the case to be valid. Contact a defense lawyer right away if you don’t remember anyone reading your rights to you.
Driving under the influence is a crime that when repeated can have very serious consequences. In the state of California, for example, the maximum penalty for a first misdemeanor DUI conviction is a $1,000 fine plus over $2,600 in court assessments. It can also result in six month’s imprisonment in a county jail with a possible six month suspension of driving license.
This is just one example where individuals across the country find themselves in the position of facing the full brunt of the consequences of the legal system or relying on legal counsel to broker a plea agreement that reduces a great many of those consequences or proves their innocence altogether.
Some statistics speak to this process:
- At year end in 2012, nearly 4.8 million adults were on probation.
- In 2013, there were over 11 million arrests nationwide, with 1.5 million being drug law violations.
- Over 1.4 million people each year are arrested for their first DUI offense.
The process of how to choose an attorney can be difficult. While there are public defenders designed to represent those who do not have the resources to hire their own attorney, the programs that keep them available are often funded by local government, which sometimes has budget shortfalls.
A good avenue can simply be to search for local attorneys and find someone that has the experience and qualifications that you desire in an attorney. While attorneys cannot pervade the image that they ‘specialize’ with the defense of a particular offense, finding out which ones have a track record with the violation you have committed could help out immensely.
A drunk driving attorney, for example, may be beneficial if they have handled numerous cases of DUI and DWI, while providing a track record of the results you would want. The process of how to choose an attorney might include trial and error, as qualifications like experience, education, and track record may preclude a few before reaching the one you want to handle your case.
There are certain terms that might be good to know in your search, such as the different titles they may go by. They include a criminal defense attorney or a criminal defense lawyers. A good attorney should be aware of the local laws that provide a framework for your case, as well as the precedent surrounding your offense.
The process of how to choose an attorney is particularly important if you believe you have been charged with a crime you did not commit. A survey of 188 judges, prosecuting attorneys, public defenders, sheriffs, and police revealed that some 10,000 people may be wrongfully convicted of serious crimes every year. The main causes of this miscarriage of justice are eyewitness misidentification (52%) and perjury (11%).
How to find an attorney is an important step in the direction of resolving your court case, whether the charge is for a DUI or for robbery.