If you have been arrested in California, it can be a stressful and confusing experience. It is important to remember that you have rights, and that you should exercise those rights to protect yourself and your interests. However, it is also important to avoid making mistakes that could jeopardize your case or your freedom. Here are the top five most common mistakes people make after an arrest in California:
- Talking to law enforcement without an attorney present. It is natural to want to explain yourself and try to prove your innocence, but anything you say to law enforcement can be used against you in court. It is important to remain silent and request to speak with an attorney before answering any questions.
- Providing consent to search. If an officer asks to search your property, you have the right to say no. You may think that consenting to a search will make you look more cooperative and less guilty, but this is not the case. By consenting to a search, you are giving up your Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.
- Posting about the arrest on social media. It is tempting to share your side of the story with friends and family, but anything you post on social media can be used against you in court. It is important to keep a low profile and avoid discussing the details of your case online.
- Violating the terms of your release. If you are released on bail or your own recognizance, you will be required to follow certain conditions. These may include not leaving the state, not contacting certain individuals, and not committing any additional crimes. If you violate the terms of your release, you could be rearrested and held in custody until your trial.
- Failing to retain an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, the court will appoint one for you. However, a public defender may not have the time or resources to devote to your case. It is important to retain an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible, so that they can start building your defense and protecting your rights.
If you have been arrested in California, it is important to exercise your rights, yet avoid making mistakes that could harm your case or your freedom. If you have any questions or concerns about your rights or your case, it is important to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney.