Why Do Police Officers Lie During Criminal Cases?

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hartford criminal defense lawyerDishonesty is an issue that affects nearly every part of people’s lives. People lie for many reasons, and these lies can affect others in a variety of ways. However, there are some people that are expected to behave honestly, including police officers and other officials who are tasked with upholding the law. Unfortunately, law enforcement officials are as prone to dishonesty as everyone, and when they lie or bend the truth, this can have serious consequences for those who are involved in criminal cases. By understanding why police officers lie and the rights that apply to those who are arrested or charged with crimes, a person can protect themselves as they defend against criminal charges.

Types of Lies Told by Police

Deception can take multiple forms. Some lies involve complete deception in which a story is entirely fabricated and contains no truth. However, many lies are incomplete, and they may involve half-truths, exaggerations of facts, or the omission of pertinent information. Police officers may engage in all of these types of lies during the investigation or prosecution of an alleged crime. In fact, officers generally have no requirement to be truthful when questioning or interrogating suspects, and they may engage in dishonesty such as:

  • Claiming that they have evidence showing that a person committed a crime when no such evidence exists.

  • Falsely stating that others have confessed and implicated a suspect.

  • Implying that a person will receive lenient treatment if they confess to a crime or cooperate with an investigation.

  • Claiming that a case may be handled more quickly and easily if a person does not invoke their right to remain silent or to be represented by an attorney.

In addition to these “legal” lies, police officers often engage in other falsehoods meant to secure a conviction. They may plant evidence implicating a person of a crime, falsify a confession, or even lie on the witness stand about what they observed during an investigation or arrest. While these methods are illegal, many officers get away with them because they work closely with prosecutors to pursue convictions.

While police officers may lie for many reasons, they often do so out of the belief that they are serving the greater good. An officer may believe that a person is a criminal and needs to be taken off the streets and put in prison, and they may do whatever they believe is necessary to secure a conviction. Officers may even delude themselves into believing their own lies, and they may feel that their position of authority justifies their actions. Sadly, this “ends justify the means” attitude has resulted in numerous wrongful convictions, and criminal defendants often struggle to address dishonest behavior and receive fair treatment during a criminal case.

Contact Our Hartford, CT Criminal Defense Attorney

To protect your rights during a criminal case, it is crucial to obtain legal representation as soon as possible after being arrested. Suspects who speak to police officers without an attorney will often be at a disadvantage, since officers may use multiple forms of deception to secure a confession or get information that can be used against a person. Woolf Law Firm, LLC provides strong and effective representation for criminal defendants, and we work to protect our clients’ rights and help them address illegal and unethical behavior by law enforcement officials. To set up a free consultation and get the legal representation you need, contact our Connecticut criminal defense lawyer at 860-290-8690.

Sources:

https://www.discovermagazine.com/mind/lies-deception-and-the-criminal-justice-system

https://books.google.com/books?id=yGCuBAAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=The+Corruption+of+Noble+Cause

https://books.google.com/books?id=7ZArDwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=Investigative+and+Forensic+Issues+in+Fraudulent+Reports

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