Criminal Defense Investigators is usually referred to as legal investigators. They are basically investigative professionals who collect evidence and information for the defense in any criminal case. A good criminal defense investigator is not only an excellent locator of valuable information, he or she also excels at developing a relationship with others and obtaining them to speak out and open up. A successful investigator uses his or her relationships with the opposition, police, media, etc., to their advantage to build a solid case against the defendant.
In this day and age, the role of criminal defense investigators has increased multifold. Many times a simple phone call by a witness can mean the difference between a conviction and an acquittal. Expert witnesses are called upon to testify in court during a trial. The testimony of an expert witness can be critical to a judge and the jury. Expert witnesses are generally called upon by the prosecution or by a lawyer to testify about a specific crime or incident. The purpose of a thorough investigation is to establish whether there is any truth to the testimony.
Often criminal defense investigators to interview a number of potential witnesses. They interview the witnesses about the incident in question. They attempt to learn all of the details from the witnesses. Interviewing witnesses is not an easy task. If the witness does not remember all of the details of the conversation then it becomes even more difficult to verify the accuracy of the story.
Often criminal defense investigators review police reports and take statements from the police officers involved in the case. These police reports contain detailed information on all aspects of the case. It would be impossible to review all of the details in each report, however a thorough review of the reports is invaluable to the investigator. The witness may have provided inconsistent statements and inconsistent dates that make it impossible to determine if he/she actually saw or heard the incident that is being investigated. The review of police reports and witness testimony provides strong evidence in support of the police’s version of the events.
A criminal investigator will also interview other individuals who were involved in the event. Interviewing individuals such as arresting officers, arresting witnesses, any emergency personnel, and any other people that you think might have had a part in the event is crucial to developing your case. Gather evidence from any place that is relevant such as banks, business records, and phone records.
There are two types of private investigators: internal and external. Internal criminal justice system investigators are often times present at a trial, while external criminal defense investigators are not necessarily present at a trial. Many private investigators work for law firms. Many private investigators choose to become private detectives instead of working for a law firm. Some private investigators decide to specialize in one particular area of the law.
If a private detective is chosen over a criminal defense attorney, there are several advantages to hiring an individual rather than a law firm. Hiring an investigator allows you to build a stronger case, obtain more witnesses and/or evidence, collect alternative forms of evidence, and obtain witnesses who can corroborate your story. One disadvantage to using an investigator rather than a criminal defense attorney is that the private investigator will not be able to legally defend your case in court. Criminal defense attorneys are licensed by the state to practice. Private detectives are not licensed. If something is not done to your advantage by using a private investigator then the felony charge against you can be re-petitioned, which means that you will again have to fight a same case.
In addition to using private investigators the investigator can also use digital forensics, surveillance, and handwriting analysis to strengthen your case. The advantages to using these resources with a criminal defense attorney are that private investigators have a higher level of experience and knowledge than a law firm attorney. They also can review and interpret all of the collected evidence and testimony. Forensic specialists are also very thorough and follow every letter of the law. Additionally, private investigators are very affordable, especially compared to hiring a law firm to hire and pay a team of criminal defense investigators.