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How to deal with being falsely accused of a crime

Updated February 21, 2017

You are undergoing questioning by police about a crime you didn't commit. Officers are making accusatory statements and demanding answers. You feel frightened and confused. Keep your wits about you and don't panic. This is the best way to deal with being falsely accused of a crime.

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  1. Stay calm and restrained. Even if officers say hurtful things that make you angry, it's extremely important to keep your composure. Becoming aggressive will not help the situation and can only hurt your case.

  2. Ask if you are under arrest. If the answer is "No," you have the right to refuse questioning and leave. If the answer is "Yes," you can refuse to answer any questions or make any statements (written or oral) until your attorney is present.

  3. Request a public defender, if you don't have an attorney. As the accused, you have a right to free counsel if you can't afford legal help. Once you request an attorney, officers are obligated under law to suspend questioning until your attorney is in the room and has had time to confer privately with you.

  4. Provide your attorney with full disclosure about your activities. Even though you are innocent of the crime at hand, any lie uncovered by the prosecution can sabotage your case. Leave nothing to chance. Tell your attorney everything, no matter how embarrassing certain details may be. Your attorney must adhere to strict confidentiality laws and can't discuss such details with anyone but you. The defense attorney works for you, and will keep embarrassing details out of the courtroom unless absolutely necessary to your defense.

  5. Write down as many details as you can about the case, and any questions you have for your attorney after you bond out. A written record can help keep your memory fresh. Wait until bonding is complete and you've left the police station before writing these things down. If you remain in police custody, don't write anything down.

  6. Think carefully about any people or written records such as gas or restaurant receipts that can provide an alibi for your whereabouts when the crime was committed.

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About the Author

This article was created by a professional writer and edited by experienced copy editors, both qualified members of the Demand Media Studios community. All articles go through an editorial process that includes subject matter guidelines, plagiarism review, fact-checking, and other steps in an effort to provide reliable information.

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