Criminal Law FAQs
In the American system of justice, you don’t have to prove that you are innocent. The state has to prove that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
At Quintal Law, we work with you to poke little holes in a criminal case, and burst the prosecutor’s “bubble”. If a case doesn’t rise to a level of “beyond a reasonable doubt”, then that bubble may burst. If it rises to a level of “beyond a reasonable doubt”, then the prosecutor will lose the case.
- Public safety issues (such as the Boston Marathon Bombers endangering a community with a weapon of mass destruction)
- Concerns about the destruction of evidence
- Commissions of a crime (.i.e. a person is in a house and is actively committing a crime) and the police need to check on the safety of the occupants
Your job may be on the line especially if the crime has a collateral consequence of loss of license (which is necessary for your job). Depending on the classification of your job, the amount of time off needed for court appearances and the crime that you are charged with, you may need to plan for how an employer will react and re-read policies and proceedures regarding your position. Once a party involves the police they are no longer the leader in prosecuting the charge. The state takes over prosecution and ordinarily does not simply like to dismiss charges based on someone’s word. The state is often concerned that the victim may be threatened or forced to change their mind. Many cases go on for a great deal of time. Also if there is independant evidence outside the other’s party to prosecute, the other party will have no claim to force the Commonwealth to dismiss.
The police called me up and asked me to come in to talk. Do I have to go?
Sometimes the things that you say may incriminate you because of your lack of knowledge of the law. Something that you consider no big deal can ultimately be considered a crime by the police or law enforcement. Also remember the police have heard only one side of the story and you generally were not privy to that information but are now being asked questions to respond to that in which you don’t even have a foundation on. Be careful what you say, those warnings given are for very good reason and should be taken very seriously. You can be arrested on the spot if there is a warrant, the police believe you have or are commiting a crime.