Should I Still Hire an Attorney if I’m Innocent?
Aug. 23, 2022
It’s possible that you have heard people say things like, “There are innocent people in prison.” Even if incarceration is not a part of the sentence, innocent people are found guilty every day.
You might be thinking that if you’re innocent of a crime you have been arrested for, you don’t need an attorney. Unfortunately, justice does not always prevail. Everyone arrested for a crime should hire a criminal defense attorney, but perhaps no one more than someone who didn’t commit it.
At Faussette & Faussette, we represent clients who are innocent and those who are guilty of the crimes they have been arrested for with equal tenacity. Everyone deserves justice, especially those who should not have been charged in the first place.
If you have been arrested for a crime in Phoenix, Tempe, Scottsdale, Mesa, Gilbert, Goodyear, Peoria, Glendale, or Chandler, Arizona, Faussette & Faussette can help. Hiring one of our attorneys is the best move you can make.
Why Are Innocent People Arrested?
Innocent people may be arrested for crimes they didn’t commit for many reasons. Some are intentional. Others are mistakes, but the end result could be the same. They may be convicted and punished for crimes they did not commit. Following are some reasons why you could be arrested:
Someone makes a false accusation against you, knowing it to be false. They could be motivated by spite or revenge or to throw blame away from their own crime.
Someone may mistakenly identify you as the perpetrator of a crime when you are in fact innocent of charges. For example, they may see you in a lineup and pick you out. Or they may identify your vehicle or license plate number erroneously.
An informant may implicate you in a crime to mislead law enforcement or seek a reward for identifying you, even though the informant or complainant knows or is not sure they are identifying the correct person.
Under pressure, you could utter a false confession to stop a brutal interrogation or to protect someone else who may have been involved.
Forensic science can overturn a wrongful conviction and prove guilt. However, its misuse can result in the arrest of innocent people. For example, minute traces of your DNA may be the result of your presence at a different place and time than how and where a crime was committed.
Law enforcement officers err in performing investigations and writing reports. They may also sway and skew evidence to incriminate you because they are biased against you. This bias may be particularly evident in officer violations of probable cause.
What Is Probable Cause?
Probable cause is every individual’s protection of their Fourth Amendment rights prohibiting illegal search and seizure. A judge may not issue a warrant and a law enforcement officer may not conduct a warrantless search without having probable cause for doing so.
Probable cause does not require the level of evidence necessary to prove guilt in court. However, it does require more than mere suspicion or bias. If you can prove a lack of probable cause, any evidence related to the illegal search and seizure is “fruit of the poisonous tree” and may not be used to convict you.
What Are the Reasons for Hiring an Attorney if I’m Innocent?
The first reason to hire a criminal defense attorney is that your attorney will understand the full scope of the charges brought against you. This would include the legal wording of violations of the law, the differences between misdemeanor and felony offenses, and the subtleties of the level or “degree” of the charges.
Your attorney will know what rights you are guaranteed under the law, such as your Fourth Amendment rights. Your attorney can determine if your rights have been violated and help you move forward with proper action if they have been.
Your attorney will strive to make sure that the evidence used against you is proper and fairly presented. We as your lawyers work diligently to expose any misleading or ambiguous evidence and testimony, or bias exhibited against you.
We will prepare you for questioning by law enforcement and the prosecution. Your Miranda rights give you the right to remain silent without your attorney present. The prosecution indeed can and will use anything you say against you.
Finally, your attorney will conduct their own investigation of the evidence and the crime to build your defense.
When Should I Hire an Attorney?
If you are arrested for a crime you didn’t commit, do not assume the error will be corrected on its own. Exercise your Sixth Amendment right against self-incrimination and observe the correlating Miranda rights. Do not answer any questions or volunteer any information until you have consulted with your criminal defense attorney and that attorney is present.
Be truthful with your attorney. Remember that your discussions with us are subject to attorney-client privilege. Your veracity will help your attorney intervene immediately, perhaps even soon enough, and with enough information to avoid having charges filed against you.
Don’t Risk Your Future. Call Now.
Being innocent does not guarantee you won’t be charged with and convicted of a crime. Charges alone can harm your personal relationships, your employment, and more. A conviction will have a devastating impact on your future.
Don’t risk it. If you have been arrested anywhere throughout the greater Phoenix, Arizona area, reach out to us at Faussette & Faussette PLLC now. Your future may depend on it.