When you’re accused of a crime, the victim of the alleged crime is usually the main witness in the case. They have information that directly relates to and most likely can impact the outcome of your case. If an accused person contacts the victim, it can be interpreted as an attempt to harass or intimidate the victim.
However, your South Carolina criminal defense lawyer can contact the alleged victim (usually through the victim’s attorney) on your behalf and act as your investigator. If you contact the victim directly behind your attorney’s back, the prosecution will likely use this against you in court, making your case more complicated.
As you look for a good criminal defense attorney in South Carolina, you need to hire someone who understands the impact of contacting the alleged victims. They should be familiar with the proper steps that need to be taken when reaching out to the alleged victim in order to not jeopardize the case.
Why It’s Important to Hire a Good Criminal Defense Attorney
You need to understand what makes a good criminal defense attorney, including their familiarity with the available types of criminal defenses. One of the first questions you can ask a prospective attorney when evaluating their legal expertise is, “What is an affirmative defense in criminal law?” They should be able to advise you on if it is possible to use an affirmative defense in your situation.
Furthermore, your attorney should be aware of the most effective ways to gather evidence without jeopardizing your case. They should be able to contact the victim without spooking them or making them feel uncomfortable.
A good criminal defense attorney will gather useful information about your case by reviewing reports, depositions, and other sources that are legally obtained. They’re trained to read between the lines and identify important details about the case that a layman can easily miss.
When your lawyer talks to your alleged victim with their attorney present, they might discover important angles to the case that can be used to support your defense. They may also discover that the victim is trying to falsely accuse you of the crime.
Why a Criminal Defense Attorney Might Contact the Victim
When a crime occurs, the police and prosecutors may advise the victim not to talk to the accused or their attorney. If there is not an order issued by the court hearing the case prohibiting this from happening, your attorney is free to attempt to contact the victim to discuss the circumstances surrounding the alleged crime.
There are several important reasons why your lawyer may insist on talking to your accuser, including:
In addition to representing you in court, your criminal defense attorney will most likely also act as one of your lead investigators. They need to learn all the facts of the matter so that they have enough information to defend you when presenting to the court.
They’ll insist on contacting your accuser so that they can ask them important questions that’ll help them understand the case better. This way, they will know how strong your position is and can build an effective defense or negotiate the best settlement possible.
Understanding the Accuser’s Testimony
When your attorney talks to your accuser about the alleged crime, they’ll get an idea of the available evidence and testimony so they can prepare themselves properly for counterarguments and cross-examinations.
Ensuring All Evidence Was Collected
When a crime occurs, police officers are required to secure every piece of evidence available. Unfortunately, sometimes mistakes are made and the police overlook important details.
For instance, they might forget to interview all witnesses or collect all pieces of evidence that are related to the case. By talking to the alleged victim, your defense attorney may be able to determine if the investigations done by the police were complete.
Choose a Seasoned Professional
Strom Law was founded by a former US Attorney, and our criminal defense team is devoted to helping those who have been arrested and charged with serious offenses. Reach out for your free consultation today!