San Francisco Criminal Defense Law Firm
If you have been charged with a crime, or are under investigation, you should consider calling a San Francisco criminal defense law firm as soon as possible. In California, criminal charges carry a number of penalties. Depending on the charges and mitigating factors, you could face large fines, incarceration, probation, community service, and a permanent criminal record. In very serious cases, capital punishment is possible. To assert your rights, call The Morales Law Firm now.
What to Understand When Under Investigation
Perhaps you have become aware that you are under investigation for a crime committed in San Francisco. As soon as you know this, it can be advantageous to consult The Morales Law Firm. Our lawyers can find out what you are being investigated for and review the details of your case. We can also ensure your rights are protected at all times. In some cases, hiring a lawyer during an investigation can prevent charges from being filed.
The Morales Law Firm can begin to fight for your freedom prior to criminal charges being filed. We know the prosecutors, judges, police, and other court officials that may be investigating you. Let us talk with these people to get an understanding of the case. When possible, we will review files and anything that could potentially be incriminating you. As we protect your rights and interests, we’ll also talk with you about what you can expect during the investigation process. We can be your voice and help you to know what you should and should not say or do. Hiring a San Francisco criminal defense law firm during your investigation could be the best approach to the given situation.
Incriminating Yourself During an Investigation
During an investigation of a crime, police can legally use various tactics that sway you into saying things that benefit their investigation, and not you. On average, 75% of people being investigated for a crime were charged because they spoke with investigators. In other words, they incriminated themselves.
We would strongly urge you to avoid speaking to the police, or anyone for that matter, without having a lawyer present. It will benefit you to remember that whatever you say in the early days of the investigation will lay the foundation for what lies ahead.
Advice to Consider for When You Have Been Served a Warrant
Upon an investigation you may, at some point, be served a warrant for your arrest. When this happens, the opinion of the serving officer, regarding your innocence, does not matter. A warrant is simply a legal way to make an arrest. In the event you are arrested without a warrant, the police officer will likely have probable cause that suggests you are guilty. Regardless of how you are being arrested, arguing about the situation, your innocence, or anything else is never recommended. In the best scenario, you are simply wasting your breath. At worst, you could be charged with resisting arrest or you might make statements that incriminate you. Anything you say during your arrest can be used against you. Do your best to remain calm and collective. As soon as you can, please call a San Francisco criminal defense law firm such as The Morales Law Firm.
Breaking and Entering in California
As an attorney from a criminal defense law firm in San Francisco knows, the crime of burglary is fairly common in California, but it is very easy for the average person to be confused as to whether they have committed burglary, trespass, or another type of related crime. If you have been caught inside the home or other private dwelling of another person, and charged with a crime, understanding the nature of what you have been charged with can be crucial in trying to negotiate your way through the process.
Historically, a burglary was often defined as breaking into a home or dwelling with the intent to commit a felony. Many states have relaxed those standards somewhat, nowadays only requiring intent to commit a crime (whether misdemeanor or felony). Sometimes there is confusion as to what exactly constitutes a ‘dwelling,’ but most often it is defined as any building where someone sleeps at night (whether or not they are actually present when the crime was committed).
The specific wording of a state’s burglary statute does matter – if you, for example, broke into a building with the intent to steal, but the building was entirely abandoned, an attorney from a San Francisco criminal defense law firm may be able to argue that no one either lived there or intended to sleep there at night. If that was true, you could not be found guilty of burglary because the place you broke into was not a ‘building’ or a ‘dwelling’ under the meaning of the statute.
Trespass Requires Less
By comparison with burglary, the offense of trespass is viewed as less serious but still requires the appropriate legal handling. While burglary is a crime (depending on specifics), simple trespass is an infraction, and criminal trespass is usually a misdemeanor, which carries the possibility of both jail time and significant fines. Simple trespass means that a person enters land or a building without permission from the owner, and is punished by a fine, with no jail time.
Criminal trespass is most often the charge when simple trespass turns into something else – for example, if the offender refuses to leave after being ordered to, or if they are in violation of a restraining order. This is also the case if the trespass happens for the purpose of hunting, fishing, or trapping – essentially, trespassing in order to take something off the land. Criminal trespass can carry jail time, though it does not have to, with the right criminal defense attorney San Francisco CA offers on the case.
Call a San Francisco Criminal Defense Law Firm for Help
Burglary and trespass are offenses with separate types of criminal intent required, so if you have been charged with either one, it is crucial to understand what the prosecution needs to prove to convict you. If you have questions, contacting the San Francisco criminal defense law firm of The Morales Law Firm is a good idea. Attorney Morales is well versed in this area of law and will work hard to make sure you get your day in court. Call our offices today for a free consultation.