According to the most recent reports by the Texas Department of Public Safety (TxDPS), almost 900,000 federal crimes are committed in the state of Texas every year.
People make mistakes, some more serious than others. If you find yourself looking at serious charges here’s what you need to know.
It’s Not The End Of The World
If you’ve committed a federal crime, it probably feels like your life is ruined forever. The possibility of going to jail and the financial burden are no walk in the park, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
You may feel depressed, remorseful, and angry with yourself. This is all part of the process and for the time being, there isn’t much you can do about it. What you have to remember for your own sanity is that life will get better.
You don’t have to get trapped in a life of crime. You don’t have to go back. There’s a plethora of examples of people who’ve come back from a similar situation stronger and wiser than ever.
It’s okay to feel bad right now, just know that you can move on. It’s up to you.
Federal Crimes Are No Laughing Matter
Many individuals feel incredible amounts of stress and experience a roller coaster of emotions when they are charged with committing a crime, others fall on the opposite end of the spectrum.
Not taking a federal crime seriously is a huge problem in and of itself. Federal charges aren’t speeding tickets. There’s no sweet-talking your way out of them.
Whether or not you have committed a crime, not taking it seriously is courtroom suicide.
Not taking charges seriously signals two things that jurors, police officers, judges, and prosecution attorneys will capitalize on extensively.
First of all, it signals a lack of remorse. It paints defendants as cold-blooded and completely lacking empathy.
Second, and probably worse than a lack of remorse, it will paint you as cocky or arrogant.
Even if you are found innocent, if you find yourself back in that courtroom, you can be rest-assured that the prosecuting party will take great delight in throwing the book at you with full force.
On top of the effects it has in the court proceedings, having this sort of attitude towards charges is dangerous for your mental and physical health. If you can’t take a felony seriously, you may very well end up committing one again.
If you have committed a crime, please take time to reflect on the repercussions and think of ways to improve yourself.
Call An Attorney Right Away
When being arrested, an officer is required to tell you your Miranda Rights, by law. You’ve probably heard them on TV “…You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you.”
Finding an experienced and relevant attorney is crucial to making sure you are treated fairly in a court of law. Having the right lawyer when facing federal charges can be the difference between two years in jail and twenty years in jail.
The government will throw every charge they can at you, even with the most circumstantial and questionable evidence. Police officers, prosecution attorneys, and even judges have been known to ask unfair and intimidating questions.
As a defendant, the cards will be stacked against you. Judges and juries tend to side with the prosecuting party and without representation, it is extremely difficult to change their perception.
Highly experienced attorneys are experts at recognizing this and act as counsel so that your rights aren’t infringed while going through this difficult and stressful process. They do everything in their power to make sure that you have a fair trial.
Additionally, attorneys can help defendants make plea bargains with the courts or walk free. For those who are unaware, a plea bargain is a deal between the party facing federal charges and the prosecuting party. If the defendant pleas guilty, their charges are either reduced or eliminated.
Many a plea deal have saved defendants from seeing jail time or having a felony on their record in exchange for probation or receiving a misdemeanor instead.
Having a felony charge or jail time dropped will greatly improve the chances of finding meaningful employment and improving your quality of life.
If you’re looking for top quality attorney’s in the Houston area, Joe Vinas and Spence Graham are top rated attorneys in Houston with 10/10 scores on the attorney referral website, www.avvo.com.
Don’t Say Anything (Until You’ve Talked To A Lawyer)
Whether or not you have committed a federal crime, do not say anything when you are arrested. Don’t say anything to your friends or family and especially not a police officer.
Once you’ve been cuffed, you may be taken to jail or the police station. They will interrogate you, often using scare tactics or the famous “good cop, bad cop” strategy.
Many thousands of innocent people have found themselves in prison with long sentences because they simply opened their mouths. The first person you should talk to after being arrested or presented with federal charges is an attorney.
The first section of the Miranda Rights states that “…anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law…” when the officer says that, he truly means it.
On top of the fact that saying something (even if you’re innocent) can land you in prison, it is also imperative to your own safety. Many fatal encounters between officers and civilians happened because of heated verbal arguments.
By remaining silent and collected, you will be seen as handling your arrest with dignity and keep yourself safe.
Whether innocent or guilty, remember these points to give yourself the best chances of a fair proceeding when facing federal crime charges.
The Sixth Amendment, according to the Supreme Court’s decision in Gideon v. Wainwright, grants the right to counsel in criminal matters. Exercise that wisely, and if you’ve committed a federal crime, contact Vinas & Graham today to discuss your case.