All charges dismissed through negotiations with Assistant United States Attorney.
DC Post Arrest Investigations
Even after a person has been arrested, both police and prosecutors can continue their investigations to gather as much evidence as they think they can get to give themselves a solid case against you. With this in mind, it is important that you know exactly how investigators are likely to collect more evidence and what you can do to limit the amount of evidence they can get to. For specific information regarding your case and the steps you can take call and schedule a consultation with a DC criminal defense lawyer today.
Why Post Arrest Investigations are Necessary
Having enough evidence to simply arrest you doesn’t necessarily mean that prosecutors have enough evidence to convict you. The standard for obtaining an arrest warrant is only probable cause. The standard, however, to convict at trial is proof beyond a reasonable doubt, which is a much higher standard than probable cause.
So if police have probable cause to get an arrest warrant then they may very likely continue gathering more information afterwards to help bolster their case to convict you at trial. This means that even after you have been arrested the prosecutors can continue looking for additional witnesses; they can continue getting DNA evidence or getting additional subpoenas for more documents or more phone records, more bank statements and any other information that they can use to try to win the case.
Sometimes new witnesses come up at the very last minute that can result in a case changing very quickly. It is an important skill for a lawyer to have on the defense side to be able to adapt to new evidence or new information that comes up. A lawyer who only sticks with the evidence that was presented at the early part of a case may not be ready to challenge new evidence that comes up later on.
Having that level of flexibility and adaptability is absolutely essential in not only obtaining new evidence that can place an accused person in the best possible position but also in rebutting new evidence that may be used by the prosecutors to convict.
Protecting Your Assets While Incarcerated
If you are in jail while your criminal charges are pending then the police still have the ability to obtain search warrants to search a person’s home or their car or to obtain information about their assets including bank records or other financial documents. If investigators are able to obtain those search warrants then there is very little that a person can do to challenge that.
One thing an attorney can do is ensure that prosecutors are obtaining valid search warrants and that their searches are consistent with the limits of those warrants. Search warrants do not give law enforcement authorities the ability to conduct completely open ended searches of all property. They have to be limited and have to be narrow enough so that the courts know exactly what is being searched and what basis there is to conduct that search. An attorney can help challenge law enforcement searches that go outside of that scope to ensure that prosecutors are only able to use evidence that they have lawfully obtained.
If I Am In Jail What Can I Do To Protect My Family From Investigation?
If you are being held in jail then the first and most important thing that you should do is remember that when you make phone calls to family members or loved ones or friends that your phone calls are recorded and are useable evidence against you.
Do not talk about your case while you are being held in jail to anyone except for your lawyer and especially don’t talk about your case over the phone. When you are in jail the only person you should be talking to about your case is your lawyer.
Unfortunately there is nothing that you can do to prevent law enforcement officers from speaking to your family. If you attempt to convince people to not cooperate with the law enforcement officers you could potentially be exposing yourself to a charge called Obstruction of Justice. Obstruction of Justice is a very serious felony and allegations of this can make your situation even worse.
One thing that your attorney can do is provide information to your family members about how they can go about hiring their own attorneys should they decide that they would like to do that. But a person who is being held in jail should not talk to the family members to try to convince them to not to cooperate with the prosecutors.
What If Police Want to Search My House While I’m in Jail?
If the police have a search warrant then they have the ability to go into your house, conduct a search of the entirety of the house and it is perfectly legal. If the police come to your house with a search warrant you can let them in but do not interfere with the warrant. You don’t want to be accused of obstructing justice or tampering with evidence. Let the police conduct the search if they have a warrant and contact a lawyer. Do not get directly involved in the search and do not interfere with the search.
If the police come to your house early in the morning while you are home and ask to search your house you always have the option to decline their ability to search the house if they do not have a warrant. That is a person’s absolute right and the police cannot do anything to you if you inform them that you don’t consent to the search. It applies to a house, it applies to an apartment and it applies to any space where you have a privacy interest in the area.
The police have the ability to be able to search a person’s house or apartment while they are in jail as long as they have a search warrant. In the event that happens the only person that you should discuss that situation with is your lawyer. Your lawyer can then take a look at the search and help figure out if the search went beyond the scope of the warrant. Most importantly do not interfere with the police officers conducting a search when they have a warrant. Call your lawyer and your lawyer will help guide you through the situation.
Role of a Criminal Defense Attorney
A criminal defense attorney’s role in dealing with an investigation that is still being conducted after your arrest is looking closely at how the investigation is being conducted and at any evidence that is obtained to ensure that the police and the prosecutors do not violate your constitutional rights.
A criminal defense attorney will be able to best represent your interests to the prosecutors and to the judges and ensure that the government’s investigation is consistent with your constitutional rights and consistent with the obligations that they face as law enforcement and as prosecutors.