If you are falsely accused of a crime, it can lead to serious consequences. You could go to jail and have to deal with the public perception that you are a criminal. It could also have a devastating effect on your future. So, it’s important to know what to do if this happens to you. With that in mind, consider the following tips in order to reduce your chances of being wrongly convicted of a crime.
Hire a lawyer immediately
When you are the subject of an investigation, you may believe this whole thing is a misunderstanding, and it might all go away if you talk to the police and clear things up. However, it’s a sad fact that your innocence might be difficult to prove on your own.
Hiring a lawyer can stop you from falling into traps or pitfalls that will further incriminate you, especially if you say something that could be seen as a lie or used as evidence against you. Fortunately, there are attorneys who specialize in these cases (you can read more about wrongful conviction lawyers here), and these professionals can help you – even after you’ve been wrongly convicted.
Your lawyer can help you with your case and give you advice on how to proceed. Speaking to a lawyer is also important because they can coach you about what to say so you don’t accidentally end up damaging your credibility and incriminating yourself.
Don’t contact the person who accused you
If you’re falsely accused of a crime, it’s natural to want to defend yourself. But the best thing you can do is avoid contact with the accuser. When someone accuses you of a crime or misconduct, it’s tempting to reach out and try to resolve the issue. You might want to explain your side of the story, but doing so can actually make matters worse.
If you contact an accuser, they may end up feeling threatened or intimidated by your actions. If this happens, they may change their story or even file additional charges against you. This could put you at risk, so it’s best not to contact them – even after legal proceedings are complete.
Quickly gather evidence
You should quickly gather evidence when you’re falsely accused because the sooner you can present it, the better. If you wait too long to gather the evidence, your case may be considered closed and any further investigation halted.
In order to gather as much evidence as possible, as quickly as possible, talk to your lawyer and present them with everything you know. Your lawyer will help instruct you on how to properly document events and conversations. They will also assist you by locating witnesses and gathering their statements, as well as ensuring that any evidence you collect is admissible in court.
Witnesses may forget important details or change their stories if you let too much time between events and your investigation, so it’s important that you document everything quickly while it’s fresh in everyone’s minds and gives your lawyer enough time to track down witnesses and investigate your side of the story.
Don’t try to explain yourself
If you’re falsely accused of a crime, the best thing to do is not try to explain yourself. This is because, more often than not, law enforcement officers will have already made up their minds about your guilt, even if they are not sure yet.
By trying to explain yourself, you may end up making yourself look guilty and make them more suspicious of you. The more you try to explain yourself, the more likely it is that they will arrest you and charge you with the crime. Plus, you may end up saying something that incriminates you – that’s why silence is best and only speak with your lawyer present.
Have faith in the legal system
If you are falsely accused, you should still trust the legal system. False accusations can happen to anyone, no matter how rich or poor, how famous or infamous. You shouldn’t give up on your rights just because you are being accused of something that you didn’t do.
If you have faith in the legal system, it will help you through this difficult time. You are innocent until proven guilty. This means that if there is not enough evidence against you to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, then the court may dismiss the charges against you and release you without bond.
Now that you know how to avoid being falsely accused, it’s time to take action. If you’re ever accused of a crime, you want to make sure that you’re doing everything in your power to stay out of trouble and protect yourself from accusations. This means following these tips carefully so that you don’t end up with a criminal record or other negative consequences as a result.