Do I Need a Lawyer if I Want to Confess to a Crime in Las Vegas?
Imagine that you’ve committed a crime in Las Vegas. Now, police are pulling out all the stops to get you to admit it. You almost feel tempted to comply, but would that be the smartest thing to do?
Confessing to the Police
In Las Vegas or anywhere else, talking to the police without a criminal lawyer present can get you into serious trouble. Once they have stopped you for any reason, members of law enforcement consider it their duty to gather all possible evidence. This includes pressuring you to make a confession. If they try this with you, remember: You don’t have to tell them a thing.
If you do make the mistake of admitting guilt to the police, say nothing more from that point on. Instead, call a criminal defense attorney and make sure that they are sitting beside you the next time you open your mouth.
Confessing to Detectives
If the police have brought you in for questioning, they already consider you a suspect. They now have just one objective in mind, and that’s to obtain your confession. Interrogation specialists have clever ways of getting at the truth. Through the ingenious use of threats, coercion and targeted psychological maneuvers, detectives have been known to wring admissions of guilt even from the innocent.
Common tactics include:
- Isolation. This approach consists of leaving you by yourself in a small, windowless room in the hope that loneliness, anxiety or even claustrophobia will trigger a swift confession.
- The bad cop routine. When playing this role, the officer will tell you that the jig is up. He will say that he knows you are guilty and has evidence to prove it. If you insist on your innocence, he will insist that you’re lying.
- The good cop routine. After making it clear that he knows of your guilt, the detective will now switch gears. He will tell you that he understands why you did it. He’ll say that he wants to help you and declare that if you confess right now, you might have a chance to go home.
These psychological tricks have but one intent: to get you to spill the beans. Law enforcement’s strategies in this regard can be quite effective. After hours of such treatment, it is possible to confess to a crime that you did not commit either because you’ve come to believe that you really are guilty or because you want the session to end. If you should find yourself in this situation, just stand strong and refuse to answer any questions without a lawyer present.
When You Have Already Confessed to the Crime
If you should slip up and give a confession, don’t complicate matters by continuing to speak. As soon as you’ve realized your mistake, ask for a lawyer and say nothing further until he arrives.
When They Have You on Videotape
When confessions take place in modern interrogation rooms, the chances are good that law enforcement has them recorded. However, while your videotaped admission of guilt will likely lead to your arrest and the filing of charges against you, it will not necessarily result in a conviction. To convince a jury of your culpability, the prosecution must present a sufficient amount of corroborating evidence to back up the charge.
Admissions of guilt by innocent people are far more common than many would think. While some false confessions stem from force or coercion on the part of law enforcement, they can also occur when the suspect is mentally incompetent or when one person claims responsibility in an attempt to direct suspicion away from a friend.
Although false confessions are inadmissible in a court of law, those who make them could be subject to charges for the crimes of perjury, contempt or lying to law enforcement.
Confessing with Legal Assistance
In certain circumstances, you may understandably want to confess if only to get things off your chest. Regardless of how badly you might want to make a clean sweep of the situation, it is vital that you do so solely on the advice of your attorney and only when he or she is present. When used as part of a plea deal, an admission of guilt can prove a useful tactic in a bid to gain leniency. This can sometimes take the form of pleading to a lesser crime that you did not actually commit.
Let Weiner Law Group Stand by You
If you should find yourself consigned to a Las Vegas interrogation room or otherwise pressured into making a confession, call Weiner Law Group immediately and say nothing to anyone until we get there. Our expert criminal defense attorneys understand the manipulative tactics employed by law enforcement to force confessions, and we will use our expertise in this regard to defend you faithfully throughout your interrogation and beyond it if necessary. Call 702-202-0500 today or fill out our contact form for more information.