Powderly Gets Results
  • Armed Assault to Murder
  • Result: Dismissed
  • Breaking & Entering
  • Result: Not Guilty
  • Unarmed Robbery
  • Result: Dismissed
  • OUI 2nd Offense
  • Result: Not Guilty
Powderly Probes Crime Lab
James Powderly on WPRI Channel 12
James Powderly on Digging Deeper
James Powderly on Channel 12
Home  >  Know Your Rights

Know Your Rights

Right to Remain Silent: Silence is golden! Anytime the police question you regarding a criminal matter, you should exercise your right to remain silent and ask to speak with an attorney. Simply tell the officer in a polite and respectful manner that you wish to consult with an attorney before you answer any of his questions. While this is extremely important when you have been placed under arrest, it is equally important to follow this rule at the beginning stages of any investigation you may be under.

Right to an Attorney: You have the right to an attorney during all legal proceedings against you. You have the right to an attorney during any questioning process or investigation process prior to even being charged with a crime. The Court will appoint an attorney for defendants charged with crimes that cannot afford to hire one. At the end of the case you will probably be asked to pay all or part of the costs of that court appointed attorney depending upon your ability to pay.

Right to Jury Trial: You have the right to a trial by jurors from the community. At the trial, the defendant is presumed innocent and cannot be found guilty until the jurors unanimously have been convinced beyond a reasonable doubt. This is the highest burden of proof in our justice system.

Right to Confront Witnesses: A defendant has the right to confront, otherwise known as cross examination, all witnesses testifying against them. This is the defendant’s turn to bring out points in your favor and expose any issues of credibility that a particular witness may have.

The following rules must never be ignored; your liberty depends on it!

  • Do not talk with anyone from Law Enforcement. Not answering a police officer’s questions is your Constitutional right!
  • Do not agree to any search, or turn over anything to Law Enforcement.
  • Do not agree to perform field sobriety tests.
  • Do not talk about your case with your family, friends, or anyone in jail. What you tell them can, and probably will be used against you.
  • Do not represent yourself. The Prosecutor on your case is a very experienced attorney who knows the law better than you do.
  • Do not go to court without first talking to an attorney who specializes in criminal law.
  • Talk with your attorney and tell the attorney everything about your case. What you tell your attorney is confidential and cannot be used against you.
  • Do not sign anything without talking to your lawyer.
  • Do not go to court before coming into our office for your FREE CONSULTATION!