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The facts and circumstances surrounding each arrest are different, yet it is often the case that the those who are arrested were in the wrong place at the wrong time. If you’ve been arrested and believe the arrest was the result of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, was that arrest legal?
If law enforcement observes you in the act of committing a crime, you can be placed under arrest based on a standard of probable cause; that is, probable cause to believe a crime was being committed or was imminent, and you were the perpetrator. However, from experience, a New York City criminal defense lawyer understands that many arrests occur subsequent to some form of police contact with a person other than an arrest. In such cases, the reasons why the police contacted you become relevant.
A police officer may approach you and speak with you and ask if you will voluntarily provide information. If you decline and attempt to walk away and the officer detains you, it must be shown that there was a reasonable suspicion of some criminal activity for the officer to do so. Reasonable suspicion is something less than probable cause and something more than merely a plain hunch or gut feeling. As a New York City criminal defense lawyer will emphasize, reasonable suspicion implies that a reasonable officer under the same or similar circumstance would have been equally suspicious.
The circumstances are always telling. For example, if you are hanging around a high crime area, seem agitated, and flee when you see a police officer, you can expect to have a police contact that may result in an arrest.
Whether or not a police contact or arrest is legal can have an important impact on the resolution of your case. Explore the options you may have; call the Law Office of Frederick L. Sosinsky, a New York City criminal defense attorney, at (212) 285-2270.