What to Do When Facing a Criminal Charge

If you find yourself charged in a serious criminal case, one of the first questions you will ask is, “What do I do next?” One of the things we will tell you up front is to make sure you exercise your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent. This is a critical reminder (something you need to be cognizant of) at the initial stages of any criminal case because the government — no matter if it’s the FBI, police department, or the IRS — are going to be interested in speaking with you in the early stages of their investigation. Why? Because in many instances it is what an individual says that makes the case for that investigatory agency. So the first thing we tell our clients when they are in a situation and facing a potential charge is to be quiet because you do have that Fifth Amendment right to remain silent, which is something that you should exercise.

The next issue is, “What do I do next? What steps should I take?” I would encourage you — whether it is us or some other firm — to engage the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney. An experienced criminal defense attorney is going to be able to communicate with the United States Attorney’s Office or the prosecuting office. They will be able to make contact with the investigative agency — whether it is the police department or the FBI. They will be able to protect your rights from the initial stages of the inquiry. And it is often the initial stages of the inquiry that are the most important because the information is the most fresh. There are documents that need to be secured, there are witnesses that need to be spoken with, and there are scenes that need to be memorialized. Our office works closely with an office called the detection agency, which provides us with investigators who will go out to the scene to make sure that we memorialize what that scene looks like which can involve measuring, taking photographs, and taking videos. Often times it is maintenance of that information and the accumulation of the information at the beginning of the case that gives you the best opportunity to be successful at the end of the case.

So when you are faced with a serious criminal charge, we handle cases anywhere from drug conspiracy cases down to DUI cases and everything in between — even murders in the first degree and sexual crimes. All of those things are certainly within our expertise. The first thing that you are going to want to do is reach out to someone who can protect your rights, and we will be glad to assist you with that.