What should I say to the prosecutor?

Asked about 4 years ago - Marietta, GA

Earlier this year, I borrowed a computer and a camera from a friend who I've known for 13 years. While still in possession of these items, I was evicted from my apartment and placed them in storage over the next 3 weeks, my friend attempted to contact me and retrieve the items, but I told him I was too busy, and that the storage unit was too far away. His girlfriend took this to mean that I was attempting to steal the items (a notion my friend denies ever having), and filed a police report. I was contacted via phone by a police officer, and I declined to make a statement. I returned the equipment to my friend, who assured me that he would clear up the matter; however, I was later arrested and charged with felony theft by taking. I don't want to incriminate myself trying to clear this up.

Additional information

My friend is concerned about his girlfriend possibly being prosecuted for submitting a false police report, and I am concerned about the effect that this will have on my standing with my probation, which I have not violated at all. Additionally, I don't think the police performed sufficient investigation prior to filing a warrant. My only interaction with the police prior to my arrest was via telephone, and I did not want to make a statement (A) without speaking to an attorney and (B) without being able to identify the individual as a police officer.

Attorney answers (4)

  1. Richard Scott Lawson

    Pro

    Contributor Level 11

    1

    Best Answer
    chosen by asker

    Answered . When a person is charged with a felony, the question should never be what you will be telling the prosecutor. An attorney is to be an intermediary between you and the prosecutor and the police. The advantage of an attorney is not only the fact that he is trained to be your advocate. In addition, your attorney will be able to discuss your defense without having your own words be used against you in court. Your attorney will know what to explain and what to leave unexplained. If the case cannot be resolved, your attorney will be trained to present your case in court. There is too much to lose when charged with a felony to even consider handling the case yourself.

  2. Lee William Fitzpatrick

    Contributor Level 16

    Answered . Please, please, please get an attorney. There is a decent chance that an attorney can clear this up and probably keep the girlfriend out of trouble, but you do not want to be trying to do this on your own (even discussing this issue with the girlfriend could get an over zealous officer to charge you with witness tampering). Especially if this could come up with probation, you need to get an attorney on this now.

  3. Troy Austin Pickard

    Contributor Level 17

    Answered . Why would you say anything to the prosecutor or the police? They are NOT there to help you, and they will eagerly find any way to use your statements against you. The only person you should be talking to is a criminal defense attorney.

  4. John Leif Fossum

    Contributor Level 17

    Answered . You need a lawyer to help you with this. Talking to the prosecutor will not help you any more than talking to the police would have. This is a serious situation and not one you can handle on your own.

    This response is for informational purposes only and is not offered as legal advice.

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