What are my rights when I have been charged with a crime?
When been accused of a crime, you have a number of constitutionally guaranteed rights, including the right to remain silent, the right to hear the charges brought against you, the right to a Minnesota criminal attorney and the right to present evidence on your behalf. You also have the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure.
What should I do if I am being arrested?
Be polite, answer all questions regarding your identity, but always retain your right to remain silent. Do not make excuses or try to defend yourself. Simply say that you are invoking your right to silence and that you want to speak to your Minnesota criminal lawyer before you make any statements.
Should I answer police inquiry at the station?
It depends on your specific situation. Always consult your defense representative before agreeing to answer questions.
If the police didn’t read me my rights while arresting me, can the case be dropped?
Not in most cases, but anything you say during the arrest can be struck from the record since you were not informed about your right to remain silent. If this is the crux of the evidence against you, the case may be dropped based on a lack of evidence.
If I can get my own free public defender, why should I pay for my own attorney?
While there is nothing bad about public defenders, the bottom line is that they simply do not have the time or resources available that a skilled Minnesota criminal lawyer can offer you.
If I want to plead guilty, do I really need an attorney?
Yes. First of all, pleading guilty may not be in your strongest interest in many situations. For example, if there are enough rights violations to result in dropped charges, you may be subjecting yourself to unnecessary punishments.
Secondly, many prosecutors will not discuss a plea bargain with a person who is representing themselves. A skilled Minnesota criminal attorney from Bradshaw & Bryant can help you negotiate the strongest possible plea bargain for your situation.