Remember: Your Arrest Might Not Lead to Conviction
Just because you are placed under arrest does not mean the criminal charges filed will result in a conviction. The following are some of the situations that most commonly do not lead to a conviction:
- The offense is relatively insignificant. Prosecutors often view certain types of crimes as being eligible for a pre-trial diversionary program. If a person was arrested for possessing a small amount of marijuana, the case may be placed in a pre-trial diversionary program which will result in dismissal.
- The case is nonviolent. Cases involving minor, nonviolent crimes often go to pre-trial diversion rather than further rosecution. The point is to concentrate the court’s resources on more serious offenses.
- Failure to observe rights. In some situations, the arresting officer may have committed some sort of error — either not collecting enough evidence to make charges stick or not allowing the arrested person to exercise his or her rights. The case may ultimately be dismissed.
- Victim asks for no charges. If the arrested person was accused of a crime against another person, the victim may ask that no charges be pursued. The ultimate decision is still left to prosecutors, but in many cases, they may honor the victim’s wishes.
- The prosecutor is after a particular defendant. A prosecutor may be willing to drop charges against one suspect if that person agrees to testify against another suspect. This usually happens when one person is suspected to have committed a particularly egregious crime.
- Settlement. In a settlement, a defendant agrees to reimburse a victim for damages in exchange for the charges being dismissed.
For sound information and advice when you’re facing criminal charges, contact skilled and experienced Reading defense lawyer David R. Eshelman.