Were you in the wrong place at the wrong time? Did police suddenly show up at your door and accuse you of a crime based on “evidence” of your involvement? However it happened, you found yourself in police custody for a crime, and you have no idea how you even became a suspect.
Unfortunately, if authorities found you near a crime scene or found evidence that they believe links you to a crime, you could quickly become a suspect, even if you had no involvement. In some cases, additional evidence may quickly clear your name, but in others, you may find yourself facing serious criminal allegations.
Why did police suspect you?
After authorities become alerted to possible criminal activity, officers arrive at the scene to assess the situation. If it is determined that wrongdoing has occurred, they will investigate further to determine who may have committed the crime or at least been involved in some way. Some actions that officers take in order to investigate and find suspects include the following:
- Question witnesses: Officers will typically conduct interviews with many people who claim to have witnessed the crime or caught a glimpse of a possible suspect. Of course, witness accounts are not always reliable, but authorities will often cross-reference various accounts for consistencies.
- Assess the scene: It is possible that officers will arrive at a possible crime scene and see someone on the premises who seems suspicious. If so, they will likely apprehend that person for questioning and assess the crime scene to determine whether any additional evidence ties the suspect to the crime.
- Review physical evidence: Officers and investigators often gather physical evidence at crime scenes that they believe will prove useful in finding suspects. This evidence could include fingerprints, blood, personal items or various other objects.
- Interrogate suspects: Though physical evidence can prove immensely useful in criminal cases, officers commonly rely on information gathered through interrogation as well. They may even use various tactics in attempts to manipulate a person into confessing.
If any of these actions result in authorities suspecting you of a crime, it is certainly in your best interests to exercise your rights to remain silent and to obtain an attorney.
Police investigations are not perfect, and you could stand accused of a crime to which you have no connection. Because you certainly do not want to make matters worse for yourself, you may want to remember that you do not have to answer any questions posed to you by police officers after they take you into custody. Obtaining the assistance of a South Carolina attorney could help better ensure that your best interests are kept at the forefront.