Frequently Asked Questions about Criminal Defense
Answers from a Queens Criminal Defense Lawyer
Criminal cases are often confusing and stressful to the accused and to
those who are unfamiliar with the laws in New York. As a former prosecutor
and practicing criminal defense attorney in Queens,
Attorney Kevin P. O'Donnell has extensive knowledge and experience with criminal law.
Our firm understands that after an arrest, you may have numerous questions
about your charges and what you can expect moving forward. To help you
right off the bat, we have provided answers to some of the questions that
we are often asked. Some of the questions to which you can find answers
include the following:
- Do I have to agree to a search by the police?
- If I am convicted, will it stay on my criminal record?
- What is double jeopardy?
- Should I talk to the police?
- What are "Miranda" rights?
- What is a grand jury?
- What is a "white collar crime"?
Criminal Defense – Frequently Asked Questions
There are certain circumstances where you need to submit to a police search
in New York. If the police are looking to complete a full search of your
home, there needs to be a search warrant. If there is not a warrant and
you did not give your explicit consent, then the search is not allowed.
There are exceptions to this; however, and with valid reason that a crime
is being committed, a search may be conducted without a warrant or consent.
If you have questions about a unique search and believe that you may have
been the victim of an unlawful search, feel free to contact us. We can
help you determine whether or not the search performed was legal.
If you are convicted for a crime, it will appear on your criminal record.
The convictions are generally on your record permanently, but as with
every rule, there are exceptions. Under New York Law §160.50, you
may be able to have your record sealed if:
- The case was dismissed
- The case was not filed
- The case was not carried to completion
To learn more about whether or not your case has the potential to be sealed,
contact us and we would be happy to discuss this matter with you. Keep
in mind, most cases do remain on your criminal record permanently. This
is why it is imperative to fight against conviction with full force. Immediately
after an arrest, you need to seek help from a criminal lawyer in Queens.
Double jeopardy is something that exists in the United States to make sure
that an individual is not prosecuted for the same crime more than once.
This means that if you are found innocent in your case, the case cannot
be brought against your again.
In the Unites States, you are not required to talk to the police. This
means that you do not have to answer their questions without having your
lawyer present to protect your rights. It is advised that you do not talk
to the police to prevent an accidental confession or an instance where
you can incriminate yourself by accident. To be safe, wait to speak to
the police when you have an experienced attorney by your side. We can
protect your freedom and avoid any mistakes in the case.
When you hear the term 'Miranda Rights,' these apply to any statement
that you make to the police that may later be used in your case. The things
you say to the police can be used against you in court and you need to
be made aware of that. The police are required to inform you that you
have a right to counsel and you have the right to remain silent. If they
fail to do so, the things that you say may be suppressed in the case and
may not be used against you.
A grand jury is just a group of people that investigate the crime. They
are the ones who will listen to testimonies, examine evidence and documents
and then they return an indictment. An indictment is technically a charge
or prosecution that usually becomes the formal charges in the case. The
grand jury is called together by the prosecutor and they then consider
the evidence in the viewpoint of the prosecution. You need to team up
with a criminal defense lawyer if your case is being investigated by a
grand jury. If the jury decides that there is enough evidence to press
charges against you, the prosecutor may pursue a conviction and you need
a strong defense.
The term white collar crime is used to describe a certain type of crime.
The crimes that fall under this title are generally committed by individuals
high up in professions and careers. A certain type of conduct involved
in a crime is what makes it fall under this category of crime. These crimes
generally lack the involvement of violence, but contain elements of deceit
or fraudulent activity. The end goal in these crimes is some sort of financial
gain or business advantage.
Have further questions?
If you have further questions regarding criminal law or your case,
contact us right away. Our defefnse attorney can set up a
free case evaluation and discuss the charges you are facing.