Should a person hire a lawyer if they are only under investigation for a criminal offense but there are no charges?

Michigan Criminal Defense Attorneys - Group

An Attorney Might Be Able to Prevent Criminal Charges


Once a person learns that the police are investigating a crime and they are a suspect, it is critical to get an experienced pre-charge criminal defense lawyer involved as early as possible for pre-charge legal representation for a felony or misdemeanor. A criminal defense attorney can often intervene with law enforcement. An experienced criminal lawyer’s early pre-charge legal representation and intervention may prevent an arrest and criminal charges. In cases where an arrest is imminent, an attorney can arrange for their client to surrender without an arrest or may be able to convince law enforcement to pursue less severe charges. Judges usually grant a lower bond for defendants represented by retained counsel at arraignment.

A Pre-Charge Defense Attorney Will Protect Your Rights

Hiring a proficient attorney for pre-charge legal representation in a timely fashion will protect you from being questioned by the police. In almost all cases where suspects are unrepresented, the police obtain evidence by questioning the suspect. You’ve heard on television, “Whatever you say can and will be used against you.” Notice the warning does not say, “Might be used against you.” A good lawyer will know how to protect their client from a police interrogation designed to elicit inculpatory evidence. It is essential that you keep in mind that law enforcement officers are building a case and will strive to get evidence to bring charges. They are not your friends and are not there to help you. Anytime police officers claim they are “just trying to clear things up,” they are lying. Never talk to the police without your lawyer at your side.

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Some Defendants are Overcharged. Innocent People Can be Wrongfully Convicted.

Law enforcement accuses innocent people of committing crimes more often than you think. The news regularly reports about individuals released from prison after some extended period because they are, after decades of wrongful incarceration, found innocent. Similarly, the government frequently charges offenses that are more serious than the actual offense committed because they anticipate a request for a plea bargain. When the prosecutor charges a defendant with a crime that is too severe, the individual is said to be “overcharged.” People get overcharged because alleged victims may exaggerate an offense or make up a story to gain an advantage in litigation (like divorce or a suit for money). Virtually none of the later acquitted defendants had the resources and wherewithal to hire an attorney for pre-charge legal representation. If they had, they might have avoided charges in the first place.

In the United States, you have the constitutional right to counsel. Police and prosecutors do not want lawyers involved on a pre-charge basis because they know an experienced attorney will make it more difficult to bring charges or incarcerate the suspect. Law enforcement officers and agents often tell suspects that hiring a lawyer for pre-charge legal representation is not in their best interest. Another law enforcement strategy is to act friendly or falsely claim they only want to talk with the person as a witness, not a suspect. Police officers, detectives, and federal agents manipulate people into not hiring attorneys by using friendly and deceptive practices. The idea is not to seem threatening so the suspect doesn’t feel the need to get protection. These are classic tactics to take advantage of an unrepresented suspect. Suspects represented by lawyers are less likely to be charged, less likely to provide incriminating evidence, and much less likely to be convicted.

Many ask, “If I hire a lawyer for pre-charge legal representation, won’t I look guilty?” The simple answer is, “No, you will look smart.” Prosecutors do not charge people with criminal offenses because they look good or look bad; prosecutors charge people when they think they can get convictions. People with lawyers are harder to convict and, thus, less likely to be charged. People with lawyers are less likely to inadvertently or innocently provide incriminating evidence, therefore reducing the chances of a charge when the evidence is less than overwhelming. People who hire experienced, successful criminal defense attorneys on a pre-charge basis are even more likely to avoid prosecution.

Michigan Criminal Defense Attorney

The bottom line is that you should hire an aggressive, intelligent, and tenacious attorney to protect you on a pre-charge basis if someone, including a police officer, accuses you of a crime like:

  • OWI or DUI,
  • domestic violence,
  • retail fraud,
  • assault,
  • weapons crimes,
  • fraud, embezzlement, or another white-collar offense,
  • criminal sexual conduct,
  • child abuse,
  • child pornography, or
  • any state or federal misdemeanor or felony.

The defense team with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. has been successfully defending clients charged with felony and misdemeanor offenses for decades. We exclusively practice criminal defense in state and federal courts. Our attorneys have decades of experience successfully representing and safeguarding clients on a pre-charge basis and in court when necessary. If you are under investigation, you need pre-charge legal representation right away. At the very least, call us for a free consultation. You have nothing to lose by proactively seeking legal advice and counsel to help you decide whether proactively retaining representation is in your best interest.

Call us today at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation or complete an online Request for Assistance Form. We will contact you promptly and find a way to help you.

We will find a way to help you and, most importantly,
we are not afraid to win!

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