As experienced Austin criminal defense attorneys, it’s our job to protect you if you are charged with a crime and you hire us. You should be aware of some of the defendant mistakes you can make if you are charged with an offense that can jeopardize your case.
When you are first charged with a crime, it’s easy to panic and make mistakes. You can also be guilty of overconfidence. You’ve seen criminal cases on TV. How hard can it be to beat the system?
Here are six most common defendant mistakes made in Texas criminal cases.
1 Representing Yourself
The U.S. constitution allows you to represent yourself and not hire a lawyer. We have seen a lot of defendants come unstuck trying to act for themselves. If you choose to act as your own lawyer, a judge will expect you to act like a lawyer who has passed the bar. You may fall foul of rules of procedure and be taken apart by the experienced prosecution. This can be one of the most dangerous defendant mistakes to make.
Our experienced Texas criminal defense attorneys have years of courtroom experience in criminal trials. It makes sense to hire a lawyer.
2 Discussing Your Case
When you are charged with a crime you may want to seek help from friends and family. It’s also natural to protest your innocence. However, talking about your case can compromise it. You may say something incriminating and the person you talk to might raise it with the prosecution.
Your discussions with your attorney are confidential and protected. If you talk to anyone else, including a spouse, it could harm your case. Always follow the advice of your attorney
3 Posting Details of Your Case on Social Media
In the era of social media, we see more and more cases compromised by defendants posting details or opinions on social media. You might be responding to a comment or think your post is vague. This is one of the easiest defendant mistakes to make. Avoid using social media during the duration of your case or even disable your accounts.
4 Giving up Your Constitutional Rights
You have a constitutional right to hire an attorney when you are charged with a crime or taken into police custody. The police officers are required to inform you of this right. It’s known as your Miranda Rights. The officer will also tell you that you have a right to stay silent but anything you do say can be used against you in a court of law.
This does not mean a police officer will stop asking you questions. Police are specially trained in techniques to get suspects to talk. Be aware of your rights and politely decline to give information beyond your personal details until you have hired a lawyer.
5 Allowing the police to do a search
Don’t give police permission to carry out a search. If they ask you, they probably don’t have permission. Inform them they don’t have permission and ask to see a search warrant. If you have witnesses to any unlawful search it could help your case.
6 Being Rude and Abusive to police
Assert your rights but don’t be rude or abusive to police or obstruct them in a physical manner. You may be charged with additional offenses. Allow an experienced Austin criminal defense attorney to represent your rights.