Representing Clients Facing Criminal Charges in and around Bowie, Maryland
The police agencies in Prince George’s County commit themselves to investigate crimes and arrest criminal suspects. Police officers work to gather enough evidence to submit to the prosecutors and hopefully result in criminal charges. Bowie is in the Second Crime District of the County, which reported the following crime report and arrest statistics for a recent year:
- Total crimes = 2,950
- Property crimes = 2,565
- Violent crimes = 385
Thousands more arrests took place throughout the five other crime districts in the county. Arrests can happen when you least expect it, even if you haven’t done anything wrong.
While law enforcement officers try to fight crime and keep offenders off the streets, they make errors like anyone else and, sometimes, officers even violate the law themselves. Too many criminal defendants were subject to unlawful searches or arrests, resulting in wrongful charges. Without the right defense representation, many people are wrongfully convicted or receive overly harsh sentences that would never have occurred with the help of a skilled criminal defense lawyer.
At the criminal defense firm of Alpert Schreyer, LLC, we dedicate ourselves to protecting the rights and interests of criminal defendants. The unfortunate reality is that the criminal justice system is pro-government, not pro-defendant, and many unrepresented defendants receive much more severe outcomes than those with experienced defense attorneys on their side. No matter what charges you face, you should call our office as soon as possible to discuss your defense options.
Handling Many Types of Criminal Cases
Prosecutors issue charges for a wide variety of crimes on a regular basis. It is important to seek help from a criminal defense lawyer who has experience handling your specific type of case. Our legal team at Alpert Schreyer regularly defends against many types of charges, from relatively minor misdemeanors to violent felonies. Some cases we regularly handle include:
- DUI and DWI
- False accusations
- Misdemeanor offenses
- Felony offenses
- Vehicular homicide
- Weapons and gun crimes
- Drug offenses
- Theft crimes
- Criminal abuse
- Sex crimes
- Disorderly conduct
Whether you face a misdemeanor or felony charge, having experienced and aggressive representation is key to protect your future.
The Importance of Avoiding a Criminal Conviction
The penalties you face will depend on the criminal charges in your case. Maryland law provides maximum penalties for each separate offense, including enhanced penalties for aggravating factors, such as prior criminal convictions, firearm possession, and more. Court-ordered penalties can include:
- Fines and court costs
- Time in jail or state prison
In addition, a conviction will result in the creation of a permanent criminal record. Such a record can affect many aspects of your life, including:
- Your ability to get or keep a job
- Acceptance into educational or professional programs or financial aid
- Eligibility for a professional license
- Eligibility for security clearances
- Eligibility for military membership
- Immigration status and ability to remain in the United States
- Ability to get accepted for rental housing
- Ability to have custody of your children
- Sex offender registry requirements
Often, defendants fail to recognize the lasting consequences of a criminal conviction. They think they may serve a term of probation, pay a fine, and move on with their lives, only to find out (the hard way) that a criminal record has long-term effects. For this reason, you should do anything in your power to avoid a conviction, including hiring a skilled criminal defense lawyer.
Challenging Your Criminal Charges in Bowie
In order to convict you of any criminal offense, the prosecutor must prove each and every element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecutor tries to meet this burden of proof by presenting evidence, which can include witness statements, physical evidence such as confiscated drugs or weapons, scientific evidence including fingerprints and DNA, and more. Our goal as defense attorneys is to challenge the evidence in a given case to prevent the prosecution from meeting their burden of “beyond a reasonable doubt.” There are many ways that our lawyers set about challenging the evidence in criminal cases, including the following:
- Constitutional violations – All too often, law enforcement officers gather evidence in violation of a person’s constitutional rights. For example, if officers discover evidence via an unjustified search or after unjustified detention, the discovery of the evidence violates the defendant’s 4th Amendment right against unreasonable search and seizure. Additionally, information gather after an arrest may violate an arrestee’s Fifth Amendment rights if officers did not properly read their Miranda rights. In such situations, our attorneys can request that the court suppress the unlawfully obtained evidence.
- Violations of the rules of evidence – Both the federal government and Maryland adheres to specific rules that dictate when evidence is admissible to court. Inadmissible evidence may be hearsay, overly prejudicial to a defendant, irrelevant to the charges, or unreliable. Our attorneys examine evidence and seek to suppress anything that goes against the rules.
- Forensic errors or unreliability – Many prosecutors know that scientific evidence can be particularly persuasive to jury members. However, forensic lab technicians can make mistakes, and test results are not always accurate or reliable. Our legal team will review how a lab handled, stored, and tested samples to identify any mistakes that could render the evidence unreliable.
Claiming insufficiency – Sometimes, a prosecutor simply does not have sufficient evidence to prove an offense beyond a reasonable doubt. This can especially be true if a defense attorney successfully suppressed key evidence against a defendant. Demonstrating insufficiency of the evidence can result in a dismissal of charges or an acquittal at trial.
Our lawyers also use other defense strategies that may include self-defense, necessity, mistaken identity, alibis, and much more.
Contact Our Bowie, Maryland, Criminal Defense Lawyers for a Free Case Evaluation
The criminal defense attorneys at Alpert Schreyer, LLC know how to effectively defend against any criminal charges and protect the rights of defendants in Bowie. After an arrest, you should seek legal representation right away. Call (866) 444-6363 or contact us online today to learn more about how we can help in your situation.