DiCindio Law LLC | January 11, 2022 | Criminal Defense
In this blog, Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney Michael DiCindio discusses 5 things to remember if you’re up against false accusations in court in West Chester.
You Have the Right to Remain Silent and the Right to an Attorney
The first of the 5 things to remember if you’re up against false accusations in court in West Chester is that you have the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. When people are wrongfully accused of a crime, the first thing they feel is a sense that they are completely alone.
However, under the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, you have the right to an attorney during all phases of criminal proceedings — and any time the police are talking to you. It is critical that you immediately and clearly invoke your right to an attorney the moment you find out you are being investigated for a crime. Your lawyer is the only person who can protect your best interest.
It is also critical that you take advantage of your right to remain silent, which is guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment. Many times police trap unwitting suspects with a simple conversation or small talk. If you are innocent, you may feel like you have nothing to hide. But you may misspeak or misremember something during a conversation.
The next thing you know, the police are using this to trap you and prove that you are “lying.” Never talk to the police, even if you are innocent. Tell them you are invoking your right to remain silent and call your attorney.
You Have the Presumption of Innocence
If you have been wrongfully accused, do not panic. In the U.S. court system, you are entitled to a presumption of innocence. This means you are considered 100% innocent unless prosecutors prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.
While you shouldn’t panic, you do need to take false accusations incredibly seriously. When you are accused of a crime, you can be arrested and held in jail until your trial or released on bail. Also, judges, prosecutors, and society will treat you as if you are guilty based on accusations, no matter how baseless.
You Have the Right to Present Your Defense
When you have been wrongly charged with a crime, the third thing to remember is that you will be allowed to present a full defense. This right is guaranteed under the Sixth Amendment and Due Process Clause of the Constitution.
These rights include the right to confront witnesses, present your own witnesses, and have a “fundamentally fair” legal process. Your attorney can present legal arguments and file motions to have evidence thrown out of court if it was seized in violation of your constitutional rights. You also have the right to take the stand and tell your story if you want.
In other words, accusations are not the end of the story. You have the right to fight back.
The Jury System Usually Works
The media often disparages the jury system and questions verdicts in criminal cases. However, the media wasn’t in the courtroom and didn’t see all the evidence like the jury did. The jury system (usually) works.
You May Be Able to Sue False Accusers
The fifth thing to remember if you’re up against false accusations in West Chester is you may be able to sue false accusers and get back on the offensive. Wrongful accusations are a huge deal, and they can ruin lives.
Wrongful accusations usually don’t come about without gross misconduct by police or prosecutors, shoddy police work, or a lying witness. In any case, lies or misconduct may form the basis of a lawsuit against the party responsible for the wrongful accusation.
Contact Our Criminal Defense Law Firm in West Chester, PA
If you are facing criminal charges and need legal help, contact the West Chester, PA criminal defense lawyers at DiCindioLaw, LLC to schedule a free initial consultation.
DiCindio Law, LLC
29 S Walnut St
West Chester, PA 19382
***This blog article is made available by the law firm publisher for educational purposes and to provide general information, not to provide specific legal advice. By reading, you understand that there is no attorney-client relationship between you and the publisher. The above-listed information does not include the entire criminal code, annotations, amendments, or any recent changes that may be relevant. The information provided is for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These materials are not intended, and should not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. Please contact DiCindio Law, LLC for a consultation and to discuss what law is relevant to your case.***