120 S. Olive Ave., Suite 402
West Palm Beach, FL 33401

Being Investigated for a Crime

arrested_180x120When you or a loved one is being investigated for a crime or criminal wrong doing, the first thing you need to do is call an attorney. Experienced criminal defense attorneys know how law enforcement officer investigate crimes through interviewing witnesses, gathering evidence and tracking the criminal target. Today more than ever, in the high tech society we live, law enforcement officers are able to gather evidence against the criminal target, quicker and more persuasively than ever before.

If the crime you are being investigated for is one of a sexual nature; like sexual battery, lewd and lascivious battery, rape, sexual abuse of a minor or any other sex crime in Florida, there are certain things you must know.

First, law enforcement officials will immediately interview the alleged victim or parents of the victim. This interview will be very detailed orientated and conducted by a seasoned special victim’s unit investigator, who has extensive training in police procedure of sexual crimes. Many times the investigator will video tape the interview of the victim but only after the story of the victim has been told to the investigator on more than one occasion. The investigator knows that he or she needs to clean up the initial interview or interviews before the recorded version is made. Because as you have already guessed, the recorded version will be used in the court proceedings to prosecute the accused.

Second, if the victim is a minor, law enforcement will administered a CPT.  In Florida, a CPT is a child protection team and more than likely the team will originate from or be associated with DCF. The CPT examination in Florida allows for many different tasks, which is no more than another arm of law enforcement. In general, the CPT will gather all school records or daycare records of the alleged victim. Gather all doctor or treating physician records of the alleged victim. The CPT will provide the alleged victim with a detailed physical examination through a licensed medical care provider.  The licensed medical care provider will closely examine the alleged victim’s private parts looking for specific signs of abuse like tearing, hymen displacement, sexual transmitted diseases and other signs of trauma. The medical provider will also attempt to take samples for DNA. The CPT sexual exam will occur in a local hospital, DCF facility or health clinic.

Third, in violent crimes like firearm or gun crimes, law enforcement will want to gather physical evidence as quickly as possible too. Law enforcement will want to retrieve the fire arm, knife, or object used in the crime. They will also want to retrieve other physical evidence, like the clothes the accused was wearing at the time of the crime. Law Enforcement will also want to impound the automobile and the contents of the automobile, if a vehicle or motorcycle was used, in the crime.

Fourth, law enforcement will interview all witnesses who came into contact with the child or the victim of the violent crime and collect evidence which today includes telecommunication data. Witness interviews are self-explanatory. But the way law enforcement officials gather evidence is worth noting. That cellphone that most of us use daily has become the most important piece of evidence that law enforcement officials want to collect after a crime. With the invention of smartphones, this piece of evidence to law enforcement is paramount to helping them crack the case. Cellphone calls made and received have the date and time stamped into history every time they are used. Every text message received and sent is recorded an accessible to law enforcement through various ways including: the subpoena power, search warrants and self-surrendering the evidence.

Every image from Google or Yahoo, every picture sent or received, and every bit of information the cellphone user looked up or received can be extracted from the smartphone or from the storage data location of the smartphone. The accused can also be tracked within several feet of where they were located and exactly when they were there, thanks to your smartphone. Remember, cellphone towers are tracking your cellphone and “pinging” to it, to make sure it is useable in a second’s notice, when the user is traveling with it, but this also leaves a “cookie trail” of your direction of travel. Just like Hansel and Gretel-I have been told by law enforcement while at crime scenes. Lastly, the family or work computer is another piece of evidence law enforcement will try to gain control over. The computer stores the lives of millions of Americans. This storage includes and tracks everything the user of the computer has done on the machine since its inception.

If the crime is a theft or property crime; like grand theft, burglary, embezzlement, or fraud, law enforcement will want to gain control of your bank records or information about where you bank. They will also inquire into where you are employed and previous employment, your positions held while employed, and will ask fine details about your employment and finances. Law enforcement officers will want to just stroll through your home, your garage or storage facility to take a look around. They will want to take a peak on your property to “dispel” any wrong doing.  These actions are no more than gathering evidence through a cursory inventory search.

The above scenarios are typical actions by Law Enforcement officers, Sheriff’s Officers, Police Officers, DEA and all others carrying a badge in Florida. Their job is to investigate and solve crimes to the best of their ability, and they do it every day! So, when you or a loved one is facing criminal investigation, an arrest or an indictment for criminal wrong doing, you need to act. Because law enforcement officials are moving quickly and the problem is not going away.

An experienced criminal defense lawyer, like West Palm Beach Criminal Attorney Andrew D. Stine is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week to help you in an emergency. The emergency exists for you or your loved one, once it comes to your attention from a telephone call; knock on the door, direct contact or through third party contact that the cops are looking to speak with you. If the police are looking to speak to you, you need to be speaking to me.

The first rule of thumb is “exercise your right to a lawyer.” Tell the police officer I have a lawyer, his name is Attorney Andrew D. Stine. Tell the Sheriff to call my lawyer at 561 832 1170 and he will gladly speak to you. Once you say those magic words that you have Florida’s highly experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer Andrew D. Stine in your corner all questioning will STOP, I guarantee that!

Never let Law Enforcement Officials into your home, your business, your automobile, onto your land, onto your boat or onto your property. Never let law enforcement officials to search your personal belongings or automobile. Never be rude or mean to law enforcement officials, sheriffs, police officers or agents but know your Constitutional rights and exercise those rights.

Why do you want to tell the cops you have a lawyer? Because everything you say will be used against you in a court of law. Why do you want to hire Palm Beach Criminal Attorney Andrew D. Stine during the early phases of the investigation? Because after defending thousands of criminal cases, being present at the most violent of crime scenes in places like Delray Beach, Boca Raton, Wellington, West Palm Beach, Loxahatchee, North Palm Beach, Jupiter, Jupiter Farms, Belle Glade, Palm Beach Island, and throughout the State of Florida; by deposing thousands of witnesses including law enforcement officers, and by going to trial on criminal matters has provided Palm Beach Criminal Defense Attorney Andrew D. Stine with the knowledge through experience that is unparalleled that will help you or your loved one in a criminal prosecution. Hire Stine or Do The Time.

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