No one wants to be on the wrong end of the law, unfortunately, situations arise and we make regrettable decisions. Getting charged with a felony is one of the most serious things that can happen to you in your life as you are often looking at prison time and fines. Not only that, but a felony charge will stay on your record, making it extremely difficult for you to get future jobs or even grow in your career. Therefore, you have to act immediately to resolve a felony charge before things spiral out of control. Here are some of the immediate steps you need to make after being charged with a felony.
Contact An Attorney
If you find yourself getting charged with a felony, the worst thing that you could do is represent yourself. While you might think you have a chance, you are in reality only going to make things much worse. A criminal defense attorney is trained to help either wipe the charge completely or have it reduced. Let’s say you are living in Toronto for example and you find yourself facing a felony charge when you were in the downtown area. There are plenty of criminal lawyers in Toronto that you can then look to hire who will represent you. They will know all the technical details surrounding the law in that case and how to construct a case to help you out.
If the case doesn’t look salvageable, they will work to strike up a plea deal with the court to get you out of as much trouble as possible. A good lawyer will understand when a battle can be won and when you should take a reduced sentence. By hiring one to help you out, you can at least have confidence knowing you are going to be getting the best possible outcome for you. When it comes to felony charges, you don’t want to be fooling around, you will want someone to help you.
Have you ever seen a TV show where after an arrest the officer reads a person their Miranda rights. If you are unfamiliar with the Miranda rights, it is your right to remain silent. While that might sound like it is a TV trope, you are in fact entitled to remain silent after you have been arrested.
In a lot of cases, if a person keeps talking to the police and providing details into what happened, they often incriminate themselves even further, therefore lowering the chances of winning the case, or even increasing the charges that are going to be laid against you. What can you do then?
There’s a reason why one of the first things you should do after being arrested is contact an attorney. Say that you will only speak with your lawyer present as they will help guide you on what you should and should not say. It might be tempting to recount the scene yourself, especially if you believe you are innocent, but you might end up doing more harm than good. Remain silent after you have been charged with a crime and only speak once your lawyer is present.
We understand that getting arrested and charged with a crime is a moment in life where it is almost impossible to stay calm, however you have to resist your urges to yell and resist and instead be polite. Even if you are completely innocent and being charged for something you did not do, yelling and resisting arrest will net you a whole slew of new charges that you are going to have to fight in court.
In cases where you resist or talk back to the police, they will often look for ways to charge you and find new ways to incriminate you. It definitely is an unfair situation, but it is the reality of it all. Stay silent and when asked to identify yourself or comply, do so. At the end of the day, it will make you look better in their eyes, and that will definitely help when it comes to leniency.
Do Not Talk About the Arrest
It might be tempting to tell all of your friends or family about what is happening and how crazy everything is, but once again, you should practice silence with things like this. The police can call up family members or friends to testify against you. There are some areas where your spouse can refuse to testify, however other people in your life are legally obligated to tell the truth if they are called to the stand. If you have given them information that can hurt you, they will have to reveal it when questioned. Simply don’t talk about the arrest until everything in the case has been resolved and the lawyer says you can.
Know The Felony Charges You Are Facing
If you are arrested, you need to know what you are being charged for. Yelling at the police officer right in the current moment is not a good idea as adrenaline is going to be pumping. Wait for the situation to calm down and then speak to the officer after they have fully detained you. Why is this important?
While all felonies are serious infractions, they do carry various penalties that are punishable by the justice system. Knowing what you are charged with will help you understand the situation that you are in. When contacting your lawyer, you can fill them in with this information right away so they can immediately start building your case and knowing what to do. The sooner you know what you are being charged with, the sooner you can go about constructing a case against it.
These are all things that you should be doing after you have been charged with a felony. Remember, you want to act quickly so you can work on clearing your name as soon as possible. Once you have hired an attorney, make sure you listen to the advice that they provide and follow their lead. The last thing you want to do is have your case thrown away because of something you said after the event. Hopefully you never find yourself in a situation like this, but if you do, good luck.