It’s easy to become overwhelmed during a criminal investigation. Especially when you’re being examined by law enforcement and especially when you feel that you didn’t do anything wrong.
However, no matter how stressful the situation becomes, carrying yourself a certain way will make sure the process runs smoother and the right outcomes are reached.
How Do You Know if Police Are Investigating You?
Some of the telltale signs that the police have their eyes on you include:
- Being brought in for questioning by law enforcement
- Seeing officers, detectives, or private eyes follow you
- Having them collect evidence from your residence, job, or social space(s)
What Is the Pre-Charge Investigation Process in Indiana?
Before charges are levied, or arrests are made, the investigation process happens:
- The prosecuting attorney (or deputy attorney acting) will hear about the crime and request a subpoena that orders a person to produce documentary evidence
- They’ll include an affidavit that says what items must be turned over or describe each item that must be collected by law enforcement. The request will also name a reasonable time, place, and manner of delivering the requested items
- They’ll list in detail the relevant purpose of the criminal investigation, what’s sufficiently limited in scope, and the specific directive so that only the necessary evidence is collected
- The court may grant the prosecutor’s request with or without modifications and may set conditions upon the production of such things
- The subpoena is issued, and all requested items are collected
- An initial hearing takes place, the judge decides on any timelines
What to Do When You’re Being Investigated
Remember, the state needs a strong case to bring someone up on charges and get a conviction in court. So, police need to thoroughly investigate everyone involved, including those who brought up the charges. And that could be you, so you need to cooperate.
Yelling or blowing up at the police won’t help your case. You might think you’re getting your point across, but you’re just giving them more reasons to suspect you.
Stay calm during the arrest, and remain silent if they try to question you.
Contact an Attorney
You don’t want to incriminate yourself in the process unknowingly. The police use questioning tactics where you don’t know you’re admitting to something you might not have done.
A good lawyer will recognize these practices and advise you on what to say and what not to say.
Exercise Your Rights
Depending on where you are during the legal process, you’re entitled to certain rights.
When being questioned, you have the right:
- To remain silent
- To have an attorney, or public defender if you can’t pay for one
During the process, you have the right to:
- Know the date and time of all hearings
- Be at all hearings
- Know the charges
- Know what information will be given to the judge about the case
- A trial within 20 business days if detained, or within 60 business days if released
- Cross-examine all witnesses and ask them questions
- Give the judge information on your case, have other people or witnesses give information, and make arguments
- Not tell the judge or anyone else what happened if you don’t want to
- Make the state prove the case against you so that the judge is positive you broke the law, called proof beyond a reasonable doubt
These rights apply to adult cases. When it comes to juvenile cases, there are no rights to a jury trial. Only a judge hears juvenile cases. Also, you don’t have a right to bond or bail, so cannot pay to get out of detention.
Hire an Indianapolis Criminal Defense Lawyer Immediately
A police investigation can be scary, so you need to protect yourself in every possible way. If law enforcement has you in its sights, a good criminal defense attorney can make sure that you’re protected.