There is nothing worse than getting accused of a crime you didn’t commit. There are several reasons why someone can be wrongfully blamed for a crime. No particular factor can justify a false accusation, from mistaken identity to just being at the wrong place at the wrong time. If you land in this unfortunate situation, a criminal defense attorney in Phoenix can help you or someone you know fight a false accusation.
A couple of things can be done in the initial phases to minimize the damage of a false accusation. Following are some of them;
1. Gather Evidence
If you are convicted of a crime that you had no idea about, the first thing you need to do is gather evidence that can help you overturn the accusation. Gather anything from CCTV footage to your clothes; you never know what article might save you from a wrongful conviction.
2. Establish an Alibi
You must establish a watertight alibi when you are wrongly accused of a crime. The goal here is to gather as many witnesses as possible to corroborate your side of the story. If you manage to give a timeline of the exact moment the crime was committed, chances are you’ll be out of danger in no time. Remember, if there are no witnesses who can testify your timeline, don’t lie and simply tell the truth. Law enforcement will do the rest.
3. Hire a Private Investigator
Law enforcement sometimes suffers from tunnel vision. If they convince themselves that you are a criminal, there is nothing you can do to change their mind until a convincing piece of evidence comes forward. In this scenario, the best thing to do is hire a private investigator. They are mostly retired detectives and know precisely where to look for a smoking gun that releases you from the crime.
4. Hire an Attorney:
If you are ever falsely accused of a crime, you should hire an attorney and stop giving statements. Unfortunately, we find several historical examples where someone innocents were proven guilty because they didn’t hire a lawyer. Remember, law enforcement is mainly interested in solving a crime; the more you talk, the more you convince them of the crime you didn’t commit. Therefore, hire an attorney as soon as you find yourself in this unfortunate situation.
5. Ask for a Warrant
Never let the police take DNA swabs or search your property without a warrant signed by the district attorney. This might make you a suspect in law enforcement eyes, but it’s for your good. If you have lawyered up and there is a valid warrant, only then let the police do their job.
6. Plea Bargain
Never accept a plea bargain in hopes of a lesser sentence. Let your attorney perform his investigation first and then accept the advice he’s giving.
Fighting a false accusation is just like fighting a real one. Only proper planning and a qualified attorney can help you get out of this situation.