At what point do I need to see a criminal defense lawyer?
The biggest mistake defendants make is waiting too long to contact a criminal defense lawyer.
The biggest mistake defendants make after being contacted by a police officer is waiting too long to contact a criminal defense lawyer. Often they are arrested and released without a court date. Sometimes they are merely informed that a referral will be made to the prosecutor’s office. You must take immediate action to mitigate or control the situation. Do not just cross your fingers and place yourself in the hands of fate.
Law enforcement is actively destroying evidence related to your case.
Most defendants don’t understand that law enforcement is actively destroying evidence related to their case as the days go by. Law enforcement is not required to keep video and 911 recordings unless we request that they do sowithin a certain period of time. (click here to see a warning from Puyallup Municipal Court)
As time goes by, memories are fading and witnesses are disappearing. Defendants are sometimes hopeful the State will forget about them. As the weeks and months go by that seems possible, until suddenly the prosecutor’s office decides to dig up something from the previous year and files charges.
There was a car salesman where I grew up whose slogan was “If you don’t come see me today, I can’t save you any money.” The same is true for me. If you don’t come see me today, I may not be able to save your freedom, future, or long-term finances.
Better safe than sorry
The reason the Law Office of Chris Van Vechten offers free case evaluations is exactly because there isn’t a hard and fast rule about when someone should hire a criminal defense lawyer. One recommendation we can make to anyone who has been charged with a crime, or who believes they might be charged with a crime, is to contact us by phone or text for a free case evaluation to speak with us about your case. It is our job to give you the best possible recommendations and to work hard and fight for you to help you get through your situation and to make sure you receive justice.