Myths About Criminal Charges in Colorado
Learn the Truth About Your Criminal Case
It can become easy to get confused about what information is true and reliable. Our criminal defense firm has helped countless individuals who have been arrested for all types of crimes in Colorado, and we have heard many of the myths that are circulated about criminal cases.
We are here to help you distinguish fact from fiction so that you can have the best chance at avoiding a criminal conviction and the serious penalties that follow.
Myth #1: My case will be dismissed because they did not read me my rights.
Television shows have caused a widespread misconception about Miranda Rights and how these rights are involved in a criminal case. The truth is, police are obligated to read the Miranda rights only if they have taken the suspect into police custody and they intend to interrogate the suspect. If this is not the case, then the police do not have to read the warnings. Also, you must keep in mind that your case will not be dismissed just because the police did not read you your Miranda Rights. Instead, the court would simply suppress any statements that you made in response to the police questioning. Other evidence will still be valid and you may still be convicted.
Myth #2: I can always file an appeal if I am convicted.
While it is true that every person convicted of a crime in Colorado has the right to file an appeal, you must keep in mind that the appeals court only reverses approximately 2% of criminal convictions. As a result, you should never assume that you will get another chance at a trial court after you are convicted, and you should have a defense attorney who is prepared to win your case the first time around.
Myth #3: The jury will think I am guilty if I don't testify. In a majority of criminal trials, the defendant thinks that they will be deemed guilty if they do not testify. According to the Constitution, however, a person charged with a crime has the right to remain silent and also the right to testify. If you have been accused and - with the help of your legal team - decide to not testify, the judge must tell the jury that you have an absolute confidential right not to testify, and the jury cannot consider your decision to not testify in their deliberations.