What to Do If You’re Wrongfully ArrestedPublished: Aug 08, 2020 by Erika Valcarcel
Getting arrested can be confusing and overwhelming. When you are wrongfully arrested, it can also leave you feeling angry and frustrated. If you were wrongly arrested and you are now dealing with charges for a crime that you did not commit, it is important to reach out to an experienced lawyer as soon as possible.
Erika Valcarcel, Criminal Defense Lawyer, P.A. will fight for your justice, helping you build your defense against these charges. You can reach her today at (941) 363-7900 or use our online contact form.
What is Wrongful Arrest?
Wrongful arrest occurs when someone is wrongfully detained. Legal charges will often follow the wrongful arrest. Wrongful arrest could also include the arrest of someone using illegal actions, like failing to read them their Miranda Rights, or arresting someone entirely based on race or nationality. The United States Constitution protects Americans from wrongful arrests with the Fourteenth Amendment.
If you are wrongfully arrested, it can be helpful to follow these steps:
- Be cooperative: While it can be frustrating when you are arrested and hauled away to jail when you didn’t do anything illegal, it is important to still be cooperative. Cooperating and following instructions can help you avoid any additional charges. Avoid resisting arrest and be ready to begin your defense immediately.
- Understand the legal risks: Criminal charges can impact your life significantly. They can make it difficult to work in certain careers. Your sentence might also require jail or prison time. When you are dealing with criminal charges, it is crucial to work with a criminal defense lawyer who can build a defense by uncovering all available evidence.
- Begin building your case immediately: While the prosecutor works on building evidence against you, it is important to come up with all evidence you have that identifies your innocence. Your legal team can be a valuable resource during this time. They can assist you in collecting any documents or witnesses that determine you are not guilty. Keep these items in a safe place and write out a list of potential witnesses.
- Hire representation as soon as possible: The earlier that you begin working with a qualified criminal defense lawyer, the sooner that you can begin working on your defense. Depending on the details of your case, it is possible that your legal representation can intervene in the process before you receive additional charges.
- Consider your legal options: It may not seem fair that you have to consider a plea agreement when you did not do anything wrong. However, if you do not have access to evidence that minimizes your blame, a plea deal can keep you out of jail. A plea bargain is an agreement that your legal defense will work out with the prosecution ahead of time. It will often require that you plead guilty to a reduced charge, in lieu of no jail time. Additionally, you may have to complete community service or drug and alcohol classes.
Whether you were arrested without being read your Miranda Rights or the officers arrested the wrong person, you need a good criminal defense lawyer who can uncover important evidence. While cooperation is important when wrongfully arrested and charged, it is important to note that cooperating does not mean that you have to talk to the prosecution, officer, investigator, or anyone else, especially without an attorney. This also means that you should not consent to a DNA test without first talking with your lawyer. Even if you are in jail, you have rights available.
Get the Justice You Deserve
Were you wrongly arrested and now you are dealing with criminal charges? You are not in this alone. Erica Valcarcel of Erika Valcarcel, Criminal Defense Lawyer, P.A. has defended many clients who were unjustly put through the criminal system. She has the tools and knowledge needed to further investigate your case and build your defense.