Criminal Defense FAQ
Reliable Counsel from a Colorado Springs Criminal Defense Lawyer
Have you been arrested for a crime? The criminal justice system is incredibly complex and frightening for those who are facing criminal charges for the first time. Here at Clawson & Clawson, LLP, we understand what you are going through and what is at stake with your case. Our Colorado Springs criminal defense lawyers have handled countless cases on the behalf of all types of clients, and we have taken the time to compile a list of the most frequently asked questions. Our many years of legal experience and our proven case results have equipped us to answer these questions, and we invite you to call our firm today to follow-up with a consultation about your situation.
Do the police have to read me my rights when I am arrested?
Contrary to popular opinion, the police are NOT required to "read you your rights" when you are arrested. The law states that the reading of the Miranda warnings and the obtaining of the suspect's waiver of those rights are only required when you are in police custody and the police want to ask you questions that are designed to elicit a response that may incriminate you. Many suspects mistakenly believe that their criminal charges will be dismissed and their statements voided because they were not read their Miranda warnings. This is only the case in specific situations, so it is always important to call a criminal defense attorney before you say anything.
Why should I hire a former prosecutor?
Can the police search my home or car without my consent?
No, you are never required to give your consent to a police search. You possess the absolute right to not give consent and you should not back down even if the police are threatening to detain you until a search warrant is procured.
When do the police need a warrant to make an arrest?
The police and other law enforcement agents are allowed to make an arrest legally if they have good reason (known as "probable cause") to believe that a crime has been committed and that you have committed the crime. There is one exception to this rule, however; the police are not allowed to arrest a person at home if the arrest is for a lesser offense and there is no fear that the person will cause harm to the public or destroy evidence.
What is a grand jury?
A grand jury is a group of people who are called together by the prosecutor to gather information about suspected criminal activity. The grand jury typically examines documents and other evidence and listens to testimony from witnesses. Grand juries are often called in for serious drug cases, and it is their decision whether there is enough evidence to put the defendant on trial for the drug charges or not.
What should I look for in a criminal defense attorney?
Why do I need a lawyer if I am innocent?
Regardless of whether or not you are innocent, you are facing the possibility of serious, life-changing penalties when you have been charged with a crime. Every criminal defendant needs a skilled attorney who can defend their rights throughout the entire criminal process. The prosecution will be working hard to convict you of the maximum penalties available under the law, and you deserve a legal advocate who will fight for the truth and fight to save your future. Without a criminal defense lawyer on your side, you stand a far greater chance of being convicted.
What is the difference between parole and probation?
Parole is a method by which offenders can complete their criminal sentence of incarceration, whereas probation is a criminal sentence. Many first-time offenders are considered for probation when their offenses are nonviolent or less serious. Probation typically involves suspending a jail or prison sentence in lieu of a more normal life. A person on probation will have to abide by the terms and conditions of probation, which may include checking in with a probation officer on a weekly basis, attending alcohol treatment or education classes, good driving, and more. Once the probation term is up and the person has completed all of the requirements, he or she will be free of court supervision.
Parole is given to offenders who have been sentenced to a number of years in prison but have been cleared by a parole board for early release. When parole is granted, the offender will have to abide by similar terms to those for probation for a specific period of time until their criminal sentence is discharged.