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Criminal Defense Law

WHAT IS CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAW?

When a person is accused of a crime, arrested and prosecuted for that crime, your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Attorney will be the person who examines the case and offers to the prosecution and the Court evidence or defenses, which may exonerate that person. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney examines all of the prosecution’s evidence and the way in which it has been presented to see if there are errors in the procedure during prosecution or possible inadmissible evidence. The purpose of your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney is to protect your rights as the accused.

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WHAT ARE THE RIGHTS OF THE ACCUSED?

A person’s rights when detained by law enforcement, arrested and charged with a crime are:

  1. Rights begin with being detained by law enforcement and or being questioned about an obvious crime. You have the choice as to whether you wish to answer questions or not. You may demand to have a lawyer present for any questioning during detainment.
  2. In the case of refusal to answer questions and you are “arrested” by law enforcement even before asked to answer questions you should be read your “Miranda Rights” explaining that during questioning formal or informal, anything you say may be used in a Court to incriminate you. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will review with you when and if you were informed of these rights.
  3. Not all arrests become charges. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will review with you what charges are filed or how long the Prosecution has to file a charge. Some cases are never brought before the Court because of a “No File” status. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney may have requested a bond to be set and often you, as the accused will not spend much time in jail while waiting to see if the charge is or is not filed. Do NOT WAIT to engage the services of your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney until you have been arraigned on a charge and a preliminary hearing has been set. This will delay your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney’s ability to set in motion your defense.
  4. If you cannot afford an attorney, you have a right to an attorney. The Court will allow you to fill out a Pauper’s Affidavit and will most likely appoint the Public Defender’s Office’s Criminal Defense Law Attorney to represent you, or in some instances, a private attorney.
  5. If is imperative that you give your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney accurate and truthful details about the crime. He is on your side, but cannot perform at optimum speed or accuracy to find that perfect defense without your assistance.

WHAT IS THE BURDEN OF PROOF IN A CRIMINAL CASE?

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will inform you that when a person is accused of a crime, the Prosecution has to present evidence to prove each and every element of the particular crime beyond a reasonable doubt. There are two types of evidence that are used in a criminal case. One is the complete evidence, which when presented exonerates the accused. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will explain that the complete evidence nullifies the claim or claim against the accused and generally negates all evidence to those claims, resolving an entire case in favor of the Defendant. The Second type is partial, wherein some of the elements of the crime may not be so easily proven. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will most likely file a Motion to Suppress all of the evidence in an attempt to have the case thrown out. In either situation, you have the right to present defenses.

WHAT ARE THE MORE COMMON DEFENSES IN OKLAHOMA?

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney can inform you of these four categories of defenses available to an accused; justification, excuse, alibi and procedural. After discussing the general defenses, your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will have a plan of defense for your case.

JUSTIFICATION

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney may find that you had justification for your crime. This is a popular defense in violent crimes and gross negligence cases. Justification Defenses includes Necessity, Defense of others who may be in harm’s way, Self Defense, or an action which made you fear for your life or fear of serious harm, Defense of property, such as your home, Law Enforcement Defense, and Consent of the alleged victim. These defenses are examples of Affirmative Defenses.

FACTUAL DEFENSES

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will explain that Factual Defenses, such as an alibi is used as factual evidence to show that you could not have committed the crime because you were somewhere else during the time of the commission of the crime. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will probably inform you of the type of evidence of all of the elements of the crime that the prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt before you may be convicted of a crime. If the Prosecution produces no evidence of the elements of a crime, you cannot be convicted of a crime.

WHAT IS ADMISSIBLE EVIDENCE?

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will explain admissible evidence in your case. In general, In a Court of Law, any testimony, documentation, or tangible evidence that may be offered, is presented to the fact finder, a jury or in some cases, a Judge, to establish a direct connection to a particular belief or theory being advanced by either the prosecution or your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney to increase the importance of the particular belief o r theory.

UNDERSTANDING OKLAHOMA CRIMINAL LAW

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will help you understand the criminal law of the State of Oklahoma. Knowing your rights and consulting with Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney can save you time, money and perhaps prevent a severe punishment from the State of Oklahoma. Understanding the law may help reduce the severity of the outcome. The statutes and their amendments will definitely have an effect upon your case. Oklahoma has only two classifications for crimes i.e.; Felony and misdemeanor. Felonies bring longer punishments than misdemeanors. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney can explain the differences.

WHO CAN CHARGE AND/ OR PROSECUTE A PERSON FOR A CRIME:

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will advise you that a police officer cannot charge you for a crime nor prosecute you. Oklahoma’s   District Attorneys, or if it is in Federal Jurisdiction, the United States Attorney has that obligation.

WHAT ARE STATUES OF LIMITATIONS

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will explain that each crime in the State of Oklahoma has a limitation on the time for which a person can be prosecuted for a crime.

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney will tell you that time deteriorates evidence and that Oklahoma provides a time limit for prosecution of crimes. The “time” begins either when the crime is committed or when it is discovered. Essentially, once the time has run out or “run”, the criminal will be set free and cannot be held accountable in the future for that particular crime. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney may offer the following examples of statutes of limitations of certain crimes:

There is no limitation on prosecuting felony murder. Solicitation of first degree murder (intent to kill) carries only 7 years.

Other examples:

Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney can discuss with you the time limitation of each crime. You may have a case that has the shorter of time to file a charge, three years.

INFORMATION

All of the above information may be found in Oklahoma Statutes, Titles 21 and Title 22. Your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney can refer you to statutes applicable to your case. In the instance in which you have been to an Arraignment or Initial Appearance for a crime, the printed charge against you that you receive, specifies the corresponding Statute.

REMEMBER:

For your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney to be able to prepare the best defense that is available, a person must be truthful, give all of the facts surrounding the crime, including any witnesses or documents, that can assist your Oklahoma City Criminal Defense Law Attorney in formulating a viable defense and strategies for a possible dismissal of all charges.

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