Phoenix Criminal Defense Attorney
Let a Former Prosecutor Fight for You You Don't Have to Face Tough Charges Alone

Do I Need A Lawyer If I Am Under Investigation?

The term precharge or investigation stage case means you have not been charged with a crime yet but detectives want to contact you or somebody's made an allegation and you need some help. Why is it important to get a lawyer at that stage? If you are ultimately charged with a crime and five minutes later they dismiss it, it's different than if you are never charged. For example, on an employment application you might be asked if you have ever been charged with a crime. If you respond yes, but it was for child molestation, it was a false allegation by my spouse; it was dismissed five minutes later and it was all a big misunderstanding, they're going to throw your resume in the garbage can.

Or if a potential employer does a criminal history check and sees that you were once charged or arrested for a sex offense or any type of felony, a lot of times you're out of the running for the job.

What can an attorney do to avoid charges being filed? For example, if you've been in a bad accident an you're concerned that they might charge you with vehicular homicide, or if your spouse is accusing you of molesting your child because you are in a custody battle - there's a couple things we can do. A Phoenix criminal defense attorney can contact a private detective who can work on your case. They can go out and do research on the alleged victim in a car accident case to find out if that person has prior DUIs, drug problems, drinking, road rage issues or against a former girlfriend or exspouse, finding out what they have in their past showing that they're untruthful, prior convictions for shoplifting or something else that would show that they're not honest. A private investigator can also obtain divorce paperwork that may contain a wealth of information.

In some cases, a Phoenix criminal lawyer can arrange for you to do a polygraph test. For example, if you are facing allegations of child molestation or sexual conduct with a minor, our polygrapher examiner can do a lie detector test and ask if you have ever touched the alleged victim for a sexual purpose. If you pass the test, we can bring it to the detective or prosecutor and ask the to reevaluate the credibility of the alleged victim.

Another useful tool in sexual abuse investigations is a psychosexual risk evaluation. This testing can show whether someone is a pedophile or has deviant tendencies. A supportive risk evaluation may be helpful in demonstrating that your ex-spouse is fabricating allegations about you for custody purposes.

In some cases, it may be helpful to do an independent medical examination. For example, if you're accused of molesting your own kids in a custody battle, we can send them to a doctor and have them independently examined; if there's no medical findings or other evidence suggesting that certain acts of sexual abuse occurred, that information needs to be presented to the investigating detective.

Perhaps most importantly, we will contact the detective and tell them that we represent you. This will prevent the police from initiating further contact with you and require them to direct their questions to our office. Prior to speaking with the detectives, we may be able to compile the results from the independent medical exam, polygraph test, private investigation and psychosexual risk evaluation so that this information can be presented to the police before the decision to charge you has been made.

Pre-charge or investigative phase representation can also be helpful in cases not alleging sexual abuse. For example, in a DUI or vehicular case, we can do an accident reconstruction to show you weren't going as fast as they say you were. If you are charged with a drug offense such as possession of marijuana, we can do drug testing to show that you are not taking drugs and that the person accusing you is lying. If drugs were found in a common residence with roommates or others who share the space, we can show that they're not yours if a drug test confirms that you are not on drugs.

Lastly, we can file what's known as a Trebus Letter. In Arizona, if we provide a letter to the prosecutor that includes exculpatory evidence and a request that you want to give a statement to the grand jury, the prosecutor is required to tell the grand jury about your request. While the grand jury is not required to let you testify and hear what you have to say, the prosecutor is nonetheless required to provide the exculpatory evidence provided in the Trebus Letter. Keep in mind, the prosecutor is not allowed to tell the grand jury that the information came through your attorney (as this would be an inappropriate comment on your right to counsel). In many cases, grand jurors will look at the evidence and decide they're not going to issue a true bill and indict the accused individual.

If you are in the precharge phase or case investigation phase, you need to hire a Phoenix criminal lawyer and fight the allegations as quickly as possible. This is particularly important if the case involves an allegation of child molestation or sexual conduct with a minor. These charges are classified under Arizona criminal law as dangerous crimes against children. If you're charged with such an offense you may not be entitled to a bond. This means even if you have five million dollars in your pocket, you're not entitled to bond and cannot be released while your case is pending. You could be required to languish in custody until your case is finalized. While there are some motions that can be filed to obtain a bond in these cases, you could still end up sitting in jail for several weeks before we can get you out. The bottom line is that you don't want to be charged - no matter how preposterous the allegations are you need to attack them now.

If you are experiencing investigation, then you need to contact our firm today.