I’ve Been Accused of a Crime I Didn’t Commit. What Should I Do?

CrimeThe short answer is to call an attorney. But, depending on the circumstances, that may not be an immediate option. If you find yourself in a situation where you are being arrested and charged with a crime you didn’t commit, it can be helpful to keep the following in mind:

  1. Be Cooperative and calm. While it seems natural to resist being arrested for something you did not do, becoming overemotional and combative will only be harmful to your case. Attempt to stay calm and make sure to interact with the officers in a respectful manner.
  2. Know Your Rights. Once you have been told you are under arrest, you have the right to remain silent as well as the right to have an attorney present during any questioning. It is strongly advised that you do not undergo police interrogation without an attorney present, lest you say, or are persuaded to say, something harmful to your case.
  3. Plead Not Guilty. If you cannot speak with an attorney before you are arraigned in court for the criminal charges, make sure you plead not guilty at your first appearance before a judge.
  4. Contact a lawyer – Above all, be sure to contact a lawyer to know your legal rights during the process. The experienced lawyers at O’Keeffe O’Brien Lyson Foss are knowledgeable in the area of criminal law and are available to help you or your loved one through the legal process.

Image courtesy of Victor/Flickr

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