Here are some suggestions that may help you never want to be a defendant in a criminal case:
- Never, ever make any statement to the police, no matter how innocent you are or how unfair you think the questioning is. The police will use anything you say against you says William D King. They will twist your words and play on your emotions to get a confession. Just remain silent.
- Never agree to answer questions in an interview, interrogation or on a polygraph.
- If you are arrested, remain silent until your lawyer arrives. Don’t discuss the facts of the case with anyone but your lawyer.
- Hire qualified counsel as soon as possible so s/he can begin working on your case immediately. Your lawyer is your advocate—the only person who is looking out for you and has experience in dealing with law enforcement and prosecutors that can help you. Do not rely on the Public Defender’s Office for experienced criminal defense assistance in serious felony cases — research shows that Public Defenders in NYC have relatively little trial experience compared to private criminal defense attorneys who often have decade’s courtroom time under their belts. Make sure your lawyer is available to you 24/7.
- Make sure that your attorney is given access to all of the prosecution’s evidence against you so s/he can begin building your defense immediately. Don’t be surprised if the police and prosecutors don’t give this critical information to your counsel right away. You may need to push them for it or ask a judge to intervene and mandate its release. Your lawyer should employ investigators who can look for exculpatory evidence and interview witnesses, etc., as soon as possible.
- Contact family members, friends and co-workers right away and tell them not to talk with police or prosecutors about you or the case under any circumstances. No matter how much they like or love you, without realizing it, your friends and family members can cause you a lot of harm by talking to the police about you.
- Don’t allow anyone close to you who is not supportive of you and your case – they may end up testifying against you as a result of plea-bargaining or incurring charges themselves as accessories after the fact explains William D King.
- Be careful about allowing random people from the Internet into your inner circle – some people will claim that they are helping you but instead may be passing information on to the prosecution that could later hurt your defense efforts. Anyone can post anything on social media sites which makes them easy forums for prosecutors to monitor looking for incriminating evidence against their defendant(s). You have no idea how far things can go on the Internet.
- If you are arrest, demand to speak with your lawyer before saying anything else to anyone. Even if that means waiting until s/he arrives. Do not allow yourself to be interviewed by police again without an attorney being present. Many people feel more comfortable talking about their case with someone other than their lawyer. But this can get you into trouble later on at trial when your remarks are introduce as evidence against you.
- If you are currently in jail, make sure all family members and friends know not to post. Any incriminating pictures onto social media sites like Facebook or Twitter (even though they may not exist). Your loved ones should delete old posts which could potentially hurt your case seen. By law enforcement or prosecutors who may monitor these sites.
- If you are arrest, tell police that you want to exercise your right to remain silent. And wait for your attorney before having any further conversation with them. Do not feel intimidate by the prosecutor who may be standing next to the officer repeating everything that you say. Just politely state that you have been advise by an attorney not to answer any questions without first consulting a lawyer. And wish to invoke your 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination so please do not ask anything more of you.
Remember that everyone has a breaking point and most people who are accuse of crimes. With the potential for jail time want to proclaim their innocence says William D King. The fact that you are reading this article right now should indicate. That you are not like everyone else who takes a plea deal. If your criminal defense attorney understands your goals from the very beginning. You will be more likely to achieve the best possible outcome in your case.