Legal Question in Criminal Law in California

Around Christmas I pulled over and ran back to aid a boxcar that I saw go violently off the highway. When I got there no one was there; I scanned for bodies and yelled for about ten minutes it seemed. The cops showed up and detained me and took me in for questioning, leaving my vehicle at the scene (which they knew about). It turns out the vehicle was being pursued for robbery. The cops informed me I was lying right off the bat when I told my story, that one of the cops was following me the whole time, and I was guilty. I was evidently ID'ed at the scene by the victims (allegedly). I spent several days in jail, lost my security clearance, lost my jobs, and have incurred drastic legal fees. Once the charges are dropped is it possible at all to be compensated by anyone? My family has been a wreck and I lost my livelihood.

Asked on 5/22/19, 2:10 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Terry A. Nelson Nelson & Lawless

Five months after arrest, I'm curious why you think the charges will be 'dropped'. You should by now be either filing any well founded Dismissal Motions, negotiating a 'plea deal' or preparing for trial.

What position has the Prosecutor taken with you on him pursuing these charges. What has your well paid attorney [" ...drastic legal fees..."] already told you - about the charges, or about the answer to your current inquiry to us?

You are not able to get a second actual 'legal opinion' here, as you are not in an 'attorney-client relationship' with 'the internet', nor could anyone here give you even an informed guess without fully reviewing all the evidence, reports, charges, facts and the defenses available [if any] in this case.

If you seek to get a second opinion about the risks and possible outcome of your case, you will have to hire someone like one of us to do that review before we could give you an informed opinion.

With that said, the government is generally 'immune' from your damage claim and suit unless you can credibly show they violated your rights by knowingly and willfully abusing their power and authority by bringing false charges against a demonstrably innocent person without evidence to support their belief in those charges. It sounds like they had one or more witnesses testifying you 'did it' as grounds for the charges. They may have other supporting evidence on which they relied.

Even if you are not convicted at trial, or get a dismissal on 'technical' grounds, you would not be qualified to bring successful 'claims' against the government. To do so would require a court finding of 'factual innocence', which is rare, not just 'not provably guilty beyond a reasonable doubt'.

If you are not satisfied with your current attorney, or his opinion, feel free to contact one of us to discuss retaining new counsel.

Read more
Answered on 5/22/19, 11:25 am

Related Questions & Answers

More Criminal Law questions and answers in California