KNOW YOUR RIGHTS
Being arrested and charged with a criminal offense is an experience rife with emotional turbulence and chaos. While it may be difficult to remain calm and aware of your rights in the heat of the moment, ensuring that you take reasonable measures to protect yourself and your future case can be of invaluable importance. At Atkins & Markoff, we take pride in acting as first responders to local residents and families who are confronted with these unfortunate events. In an effort to help our prospective clients take steps in the right direction after an arrest, our Oklahoma criminal defense attorneys have provided the following information about the mistakes you should avoid and the rights you possess.
Rule Number One: Remain Silent
If you or your loved one has been arrested, it is vital that you understand that you do not have to speak with law enforcement officers. In fact, we strongly urge everyone to avoid speaking to any law enforcement agency without a lawyer present, ever, for any reason. There is nothing you will say that will help you, and a lawyer can work to ensure that something you do say early in the legal process is not used to incriminate you later. Your right to remain silent is one of the most essential legal rights you possess, and we advise you to exercise that right.
Know What Not to Do
Avoiding mistakes is crucial to increasing your ability to protect your well-being and future. As such, you should never resist when a law enforcement officer arrests you, even if you are innocent. Resisting arrest or obstructing an officer’s duties can potentially subject you to unwanted circumstances, including additional charges. If you are innocent and law enforcement officers infringe upon your rights, then these matters need to be handled by an experienced criminal defense attorney by pursuing legal recourse for an unlawful arrest.
You should also never resist any frisks or pat downs conducted by law enforcement officers. Although legal areas may be gray here, law enforcement officers generally have the right to search your person and / or your immediate presence when making an arrest or if they have a reasonable suspicion.
Whatever the circumstances and charges may be, you should always be aware of the procedural requirements and / or deadlines involved. In driving under the influence cases, for example, you must request an administrative hearing with the Oklahoma Department of Public Safety (DPS) within 15 days to protect your driving privileges. Working with an attorney from our firm can ensure that mistakes are not committed in your particular case.
Understand Your Rights
The U.S. Constitution guarantees all U.S. citizens certain rights when they are charged with a criminal offense. Among these rights, the most important include:
- Your right to remain silent
- Your right to legal counsel
- Your right to have legal counsel present during interrogation
- Your right against unlawful search and seizure
- You right to know all charges against you
- Your right to due process, including a trial
As knowing how and when to assert these rights can be a tricky matter, we strongly encourage anyone facing a criminal allegation in Oklahoma, or their family members, to reach out for the experienced representation and support that our firm can provide. We are here to ensure that all precautions are taken during the most crucial stages of your case and will remain by your side throughout every step.
PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS! RETAIN AN OKLAHOMA CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER.
At Atkins & Markoff, our seasoned Oklahoma criminal defense lawyers have proven that we have the breadth of legal knowledge and skills to effectively protect your rights from the very first moment you come to our firm. Additionally, we know how to use your rights to protect your freedom and your future. As time is such a crucial factor in your case, we strongly advise you to schedule a free case evaluation as soon as possible after your arrest, or after your loved one has been arrested, so that you can ensure that no mistakes are made. Find the prompt attention and support you need from a firm that has more than 100 years of combined experience. Contact Atkins & Markoff today.