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  • Writer's pictureNilima

The Case Unraveled: Can I Press Charges For Theft Or Assault?

You might not know it, but a victim plays an essential role in the criminal justice system simply by reporting a crime. However, it is all up to the prosecutor and the judge when it decides about these charges. If you are trying to determine if you are going to press charges regarding theft or assault, it would be good to learn more about it. Today, we will unravel this type of case to figure things out by ourselves quickly.

Police report vs. Criminal charges

You might not be familiar with these concepts, but you need to understand that they are not the same. A lot of victims think that reporting something to the police would automatically mean pressing criminal charges. However, they are different, and that is the first thing that you must understand. First off, when a victim contacts the station to file a report, they would then record it. Later on, the prosecutor will handle the case, and that is when the victim’s cooperation will be asked, and then a criminal investigation will be held. Only after that will there be a chance to apply criminal charges.

Victim’s wishes

The next thing that you might want to know about is that you have the right to charge the suspect as a victim or not. However, you need to understand that pressing charges is not something that would be done automatically, even if you wish for it to be. Police officers will detain the suspect, but they would also need time to seek evidence and a warrant for this from a prosecutor. You might want to press charges, but the prosecutor in charge might decline if you do not have enough evidence for it. Once your case gets rejected, you cannot look around for another prosecutor.

Getting a good lawyer

Probably one of the most important things that you should have is a good lawyer. Getting a good one would increase the chances for your charges to pull through, even if it is as simple as theft or assault. Depending on the degree of the case, the prosecution is bound to make a decision as soon as possible. With a good lawyer to reason out with the prosecutor, the chances are that you will be able to push through with your charges, so you might want to try it out.

Limitation period

You might be wondering if there is a time limit in which you can press charges for something like an assault, and the truth is that there is no period of limitation when it comes to things like this. However, it would be ideal for pressing charges as soon as possible if you have enough evidence, to begin with. It would be essential to do this if you are pressed for time. But it is still indictable to allege someone of assault when you deem it necessary.

Historical offenses

When it comes to occurrences that have happened a long time ago, you can call this historical offense, and it can be something that you can ground your case on if you want your charge to push through. If you have filed police reports before or if there are files against the suspect for the said crime such as assault or theft, then it is rightfully so that you can use these historical offenses as something that would help you with your case and show the judge and the prosecutor that they are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This is also why you would need to have an excellent lawyer to help you work it out in a way that would favor you.

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