One of the most important components of America’s legal system is our principle that all those accused of crimes are presumed innocent until proven guilty. This principle applies to anyone and everyone, but law enforcement often acts outside the bounds of acceptable conduct when they interact with a suspect, sometimes violating a suspect’s civil rights.
Should a police officer violate your rights during an interaction, you may have grounds to fight the resulting criminal charges, even if the evidence against you is very strong otherwise. This principle ensures that justice is not achieved unjustly, and recognizes that law enforcement who unfairly enforces the law is not part of a just society.
If you suspect that your arresting officer violated your rights, you should consult with an experienced defense attorney. An established defense attorney who not only understands the law but also the local justice system can help you evaluate your arrest and identify any violations of your rights. Once you understand your experience in the context of the law, you can build a strong defense and protect your rights while fighting for dismissal of the charges.
How might an officer violate your rights?
An officer arresting a suspect bears a responsibility to obey proper procedures, including those that govern gathering evidence and detaining the suspect. An officer may violate your rights if he or she:
- does not respect your right to remain silent, or claims that you may not remain silent
- does not inform you that the prosecution may use your words and actions against you
- does not allow you to have an attorney present during questioning
- illegally searches your person or property to find evidence
- treats you like you are guilty before conviction or acquital
- treats you inhumanely
- uses unnecessary force or inhumane treatment in the course of the arrest or while holding you
Your guilt or innocence in the matter has little impact on the responsibilities of the law enforcement officer. If the officer does one’s job correctly, then they encourage justice whether the charges stick or not.
Begin building your defense as soon as you can
The team of professional prosecutors handling your case begins building their case against you as soon as they receive the charges. Do not wait to begin building your defense, no matter how serious or slight the charges may seem. An experienced attorney can explore your options and identify grounds for defense no matter what circumstances lead to your charges. This keeps your rights protected and strengthens protections for those who cannot stand up for themselves.