If you are involved or have been involved in any event that could lead to a criminal charge brought against you, it’s critical that you do not admit guilt, and in fact, that you avoid making any statement relating to your potential responsibility for the incident altogether.
Though Massachusetts law does not allow involuntary statements to be considered as evidence in a criminal prosecution, if any statements you are deemed to have been made voluntarily, freely, and rationally, then such statements may be admitted into evidence — and assuming that the statements implicate you in some fashion — may seriously hurt your case.
Most states, including Massachusetts, protect one spouse from being compelled to testify against the other, except in limited circumstances — this is known as the spousal (or marital) privilege, and it is a powerful evidentiary privilege that can help to significantly strengthen your defense in a criminal case.
As a matter of public policy, the spousal privilege is important, as it protects the marriage construct during a high-conflict trial in which one spouse would otherwise be called upon to testify against the other. From a policy perspective, the law assumes that to require spouses to testify against each other could potentially deteriorate the institution of marriage in society, and might damage the relationship between the two spouses to a point beyond repair.
If you’re being criminally investigated by law enforcement authorities — or, alternatively, if you suspect that a criminal investigation will begin — then you may be feeling overwhelmed or even confused by the whole process. Certainly, you’re likely to have questions and concerns about what you can do in response to the criminal investigation.
Probation is a form of alternative sentencing in all states, including the state of Massachusetts, to allow an offender to serve their sentence – in part or in full – in the community at-large. When an offender is put on probation, the probation court imposes various supervisory conditions over the offender, some of which may be rather harsh or difficult to adhere to.
Unfortunately, when the court imposes strict probationary conditions, offenders may end up violating their probation and may be subject to additional limitations and – in some cases – may even have their probation revoked.
We are happy to answer any questions you may have, please call The Fernandez Firm anytime.
We are a full-service law firm that successfully represents clients throughout all of Massachusetts in matters from criminal defense to personal injury.