At the Law Office of Tom Somos, LLC, we provide experienced traffic and criminal law attorney services to Columbus, Ohio, and surrounding areas.
What do you need to do to protect yourself when the police question you about a crime or you are accused of a crime that you did not commit?
The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution authorizes the police to make an arrest only when they have “probable cause” to believe that a crime was committed. The police officer must be able to point to objective factual circumstances. The police officer can only stop a person in order to question him when that Officer has a reasonable suspicion that the person is engaged in criminal activity.
The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution guarantees the “right of silence.” The Police Officer cannot generally arrest you simply because of your failure to respond to questions.
If you are not being arrested, you are free to leave. You might want to confirm that the Officer has no intentions of stopping you from leaving.
If the Officer replies that you are not free to leave, you should remain at the scene, and request the assistance of an experienced defense attorney.
Know Your Rights
If you have reason to believe that you are a potential suspect, you should politely decline to answer any questions until you have had an opportunity to contact a qualified and experienced defense attorney. You are entitled to be provided with adequate and competent legal advice. You are entitled to know the charges that have been brought against you. You are entitled to confront the witnesses against you and you have the right to gather evidence and witnesses in your own defense.
If you have been accused of a crime that you did not commit, here are some helpful
1. Politely decline to answer any questions, and immediately request an attorney;
2. Immediately secure the services of a qualified and experienced criminal defense
3. Write down as many details about your case to assist your attorney;
4. Write down a list of all possible witnesses with their names, addresses, phone
numbers, and what they know;