Being wrongfully accused of a crime is an extremely jarring and frightening thing to go through. The repercussions can be severe, leading to embarrassment, mental distress, and possibly a criminal conviction which could lead to jail time and other penalties.
Here are some things to keep in mind if you or someone close to you has been wrongfully accused of a crime:
- Do not talk to the police: Anything you say or do can be used against you. Before you speak to the police, exercise your right to get an attorney.
- Do not talk to the accuser: If someone has accused you of a crime, it is important not to try to talk to or reconcile with that person. Do not call, text, email or instant message that person.
- Get a criminal defense lawyer on your side ASAP: Waiting will not help. It is important to get an attorney as soon as possible, whether you are currently being investigated for a crime or whether you have already been charged.
- Gather evidence: If possible, gather any evidence related to the alleged crime. Take photos, get contact information from possible witnesses, gather documents that may be beneficial to the case, etc. However, it is important not to tamper with crime scene evidence.
If you have found yourself in the unfortunate situation of being wrongfully accused of a crime, do not wait to take action. The sooner you talk to a defense attorney, the more options that may be available.