Motions to Suppress
Evidence is the most important facet of all criminal cases. The evidence in a particular case will determine what, if any criminal charges will arise. The strength of the evidence will determine how zealously the State will prosecute the case and what types of offers they might make during the negotiation phase. Without strong evidence, there is typically no case. Criminal cases are unique in the legal world in that the prosecution is required to prove their case beyond and to the exclusion of every reasonable doubt, and the system does not require the defendant to present any evidence of his or her innocence. Because of the way the criminal justice system is structured, skilled Clearwater criminal defense lawyers will often look for ways to exclude evidence that the state might want to use.
The most common and most effective way to exclude evidence is for your lawyer to file a motion to suppress evidence. A motion to suppress may be filed in situations where police or other law enforcement agencies collect evidence that they intend to use against you in violation of your constitutional rights. There are several protections laid out by the United States Constitution that are routinely violated by the police. A skilled defense lawyer will be able to identify these violations and exploit them to your advantage.When Can I File a Motion to Suppress?
A motion to suppress can be filed any time evidence against you is collected in violation of a constitutional or legal right. The most common constitutional right violated by police is the Fourth Amendment right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Police officers are not permitted to simply detain or search people because they have a hunch that criminal activity is afoot. Law enforcement must have objective, reasonable suspicion that a crime has occurred or is about to occur in order to detain or search anyone that they suspect. Officer’s however, routinely overlook this constitutional protection and stop people even when they have not committed any crime. An observant Clearwater criminal defense lawyer will be able to recognize such a situation and argue to the judge that any evidence uncovered after an illegal search or arrest must be thrown out of court.
The most damning evidence in any criminal case often comes directly from the defendant. The constitution states under the Fifth Amendment that no person shall be compelled to be a witness against him or herself in a criminal prosecution. This constitutional protection does not stop police from trying to extract confessions, even false ones from people that they suspect committed a crime. It is important to remember that you should never speak to the police if you are under investigation for any criminal offense, as they are not trying to get to the truth, but are instead trying to collect evidence against you to close their case. Even if you did give a confession, a skilled Clearwater criminal defense lawyer may be able to uncover issues with the police investigation that made your confession involuntary. If your lawyer can find evidence of that, a motion to suppress can result in the evidence that you provided being thrown out as well.Speak to Our Lawyers Today
The attorneys at Hanlon Law have extensive experience identifying and suppressing evidence that is obtained illegally. Don’t allow an overzealous prosecution and law enforcement team to utilize evidence illegally uncovered against you at trial. Instead, hire a skilled lawyer who can utilize the legal system to create advantages for you prior to ever going before a jury. We pride ourselves on exhausting every option on a case to benefit our clients. If you are in need of legal services, call us today at 727-897-5413.