Recently Arrested in Fort Wayne? Know Your Rights.
Why You Should Invoke Your Right to Remain Silent
When you're facing criminal charges in Indiana, it's essential that you both understand your legal rights and that you take the necessary steps to protect them. Failing to invoke your constitutional rights can result in a miscarriage of justice, and possibly even a wrongful conviction. Our criminal justice system is by no means foolproof, and innocent people have been sent to prison based on circumstantial evidence alone. Don't let this happen to you. In the United States, when citizens are arrested on suspicion of committing a crime, their constitutional rights are immediately put into effect to ensure their right to fair criminal proceedings. These constitutional rights must be followed by every state, city and county in the nation.
After an arrest in Indiana, your rights are as follows:
- You have the right to know what you are being arrested for.
- If there is a warrant out for your arrest, you have the right to look over it.
- You have the right to be treated humanely and without the threat of violence.
- You are protected against illegal searches and seizures. Illegally collected evidence is inadmissible.
- Your Miranda Rights must be recited by a police officer or interrogator.
- You have the right to stop answering questions and speak with an attorney.
- In order for you to remain in police custody (usually 48 hours), a formal charge must be made.
- You are entitled to a hearing within a reasonably short period of time, as well as a speedy trial.
Understanding What Happens After Your Arrest
If you are arrested, the police will handcuff you and transport you to jail for booking. At this time, they will take a mug shot and fingerprint you for identification. If the police arrested you without a search warrant, they may ask you for permission to search your vehicle, your home and other possessions. You have the right to refuse consent to these searches. Usually, when an officer asks to search your property, it means that they would otherwise need to obtain a warrant from a judge; if you give your consent, you abandon this right. Knowing your rights can be confusing, and you could easily be fooled into believing that you must consent to a search or that you must talk to the police. It's critical that you exercise your right to remain silent and your right to speak to a Fort Wayne criminal attorney before you say or do anything that can be used against you.
Contact a Fort Wayne Criminal Lawyer Before Your Initial Hearing
The next step will be the initial hearing where you will be advised of your formal charges. At this time, a preliminary bail amount will be set and you will be advised of your rights as well as any deadlines. The initial hearing can take place 24 hours after your arrest or the state can request a 72-hour continuance, which is automatically granted as long as bond has been set. It's not uncommon for the court to set a pretrial conference or "further proceedings." At the hearing, you can either plead guilty, arrange for a trial where a judge decides on your guilt or innocence, or choose a jury trial where your fate is in the hands of a jury.
To learn more about your rights after an arrest, contact my firm for a free Initial consultations.