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If the date of an offense is listed on court papers as four months prior to the true date, can the charges be dismissed?

Vero Beach, FL |
Filed under: Criminal charges

There are three charges, and all have the wrong date on them, and a warrant was issued for arrest. These are felony charges and no Miranda was issued.

Attorney Answers 3


Whether a defendant was given Miranda warnings is not relevant as to whether the defendant will be charged. It will likely only be useful to keep statements made by the defendant out of evidence at trial (getting a confession thrown out of court). The date on the warrant won't be the key to getting the charge dismissed. However, it will be relevant if the date is incorrect on the charging papers (the charging information), which is the document filed by the State Attorney that actually names the charges filed against the Defendant in court. The State, at trial, has to prove the crime alleged was committed in the county and the date alleged in the charging information. If they cannot prove it was committed on the date in question, or in the county in question, the defense can move to dismiss after the State presents its case in chief. Keep in mind that the State can amend the charging information at almost anytime prior to trial.

Responses should not be relied upon for legal decision making. One should contact a lawyer and establish an attorney-client privilege to rely on legal advice. Any communication here is NOT considered attorney-client privilege and is not confidential.

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You should consult a lawyer for the answer to this question. An attorney can review your Discovery and determine whether you have a legal basis for any pre-trial motions. Dates surrounding offenses can be tricky. The incorrect dates could be a typo that is explained through the Discovery process or the dates could indicate something seriously wrong with the State's case.

This answer does not, nor is it intended to, create an attorney-client relationship or constitute attorney advertising. Rather, it is offered solely for information purposes. Since the facts of each case are different, it is critical to consult with qualified counsel with whom information can be shared and assessed under an attorney-client privilege, so that competent advice can be obtained on which you can make informed decisions.

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Technically, yes. At trial the charges can be dismissed if the date established by the evidence introduced does not match that date charged by the State in the Information. The Judge can even let the State change the date on the Information during trial It is a gamble and depending on the strength of your case apart from the date "error," trial may not be advisable. The date issue is a possible winner, but I would not advise my clients to rely on that as our only defense.

I recommend speaking to a lawyer to discuss all the strengths and weaknesses of our case, and not hope to win on a technicality.

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