When you face criminal charges, filing a motion to suppress evidence could be extremely useful in your defense. This is true even if you are guilty of the crime that you are charged with committing. By filing a motion to suppress evidence, you increase the chances that the charges against you will be dismissed or reduced to less serious offenses.
What Are Common Grounds to Suppress Evidence That Could Help in Your Defense?
If a motion to suppress evidence is granted, the evidence cannot be used against you by the police and prosecutor. Some evidence that is suppressed could be vital to proving the criminal charges against you, and the prosecutor may be forced to dismiss the charges. In other cases, the criminal case would go on, but the suppression of the evidence could significantly weaken the prosecutor’s case.
In order to file a motion to suppress evidence, you must have grounds to file the motion. Here are some common reasons why your attorney might file this motion:
- Unlawful search and seizure. Under the Fourth Amendment, you are protected from unlawful searches and seizures of yourself, your home, your property. The police must have a valid search warrant or probable cause to believe that a crime has been committed to search and collect evidence. If your constitutional rights are violated, the evidence that is found may be suppressed.
- Miranda rights. You have a constitutional right to be read your Miranda rights by the police if you are taken into custody before they question or interrogate you. This includes informing you of your right to remain silent and your right to an attorney. If you were not properly given your Miranda rights, your statements could be excluded.
- Chain of custody. Chain of custody refers to the proper handling and storage of evidence from the moment it is collected by the police until it is presented as evidence at your trial. If the evidence was not handled or stored properly, a motion to suppress its use against you may be granted.
Have you been charged with committing a crime? We offer a free consultation with one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys to discuss your situation and how we can help you build a strong defense. To take advantage of this offer, call our office today.