In order to bring a successful outcome to the criminal defense of an individual charged with a crime, and ensure justice, it’s imperative to pull together a team of professionals. An integral member of the team assembled by a defense attorney is their choice of private investigator.
The ability and experience of the private investigator can greatly influence what the attorney has to present as evidence in court. The private investigator’s credentialed skills are important when gathering that evidence, utilizing a vast network of knowledge and contacts to make certain the evidence is substantiated and never compromised.
Oftentimes individuals will hire a private investigator on their own. This isn’t always advisable, being more advantageous to the client to have the investigator be a part of the attorney’s team and within the scope of all correspondence relating to strategies, opinions, and theories about the case.
Professional Investigators offer the following advice to attorneys:
When utilizing the services of a Private Investigator get them involved in the case as soon as possible. This is true in both criminal and civil matters.
Criminal Defense Investigations – when a client is retained, schedule a meeting with the client and the investigator as soon as possible. There will be specific questions the investigator will need to ask the client. The timeliness with which the investigator can get out in the field and locate witnesses plays a key role in any criminal defense case. Witnesses can either be confirmed, meaning they are listed on the police report and we know who they are or they can be unconfirmed and we don’t know they even exist. A thorough private investigator will conduct a canvass of the area and attempt to locate previously unknown or unconfirmed witnesses. In one particular case the attorney we were working for called us within a day of the incident taking place. The police are involved in an investigation as soon as it is determined a crime has been committed. Your private investigators are part of the defense team and should be involved as soon as you are retained by the client.
Civil investigations – the same principals apply in a civil case. Your private investigator should become involved as soon as you retain a client. In civil matters such as personal injury claims any factors that contributed to the injury should be photographed before they can be removed or repaired. The absence of signage or physical security measures may also have contributed to the accident and the location should be photographed before the owner has the opportunity to put signs up or fence in the site of the accident. In a recent premises liability case investigated by Management Resources, a year after the occurrence, it was found that the building entrance doors had been replaced, the locks were repaired and the surveillance cameras had been fixed. The accident scene was nothing like it was when the client was injured. It’s also important to obtain witness statements as soon as possible after the incident. Witnesses forget, they move, they get sick and in some cases pass away. It’s critical that the investigation be conducted as soon as possible after the incident or accident.
Retain the private investigator – It’s recommend that the attorney retain the private investigator as opposed to the individual client retaining the investigator. When retained by the attorney the investigator becomes part of the legal team and therefore correspondence between the investigator and the attorney is considered “work product”.
Management Resources principles, Bob Rahn and Kim Anklin, were the investigators in the recent exoneration of Jonathan Fleming. Working diligently with Fleming for a year, they were able to piece together and find evidence suppressed for over 24 years leading to his being set free on April 8, 2014.
Management Resources Ltd of New York is a professional investigative firm licensed in New York and New Jersey. . Management Resources is a member of the New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Associated Licensed Detectives of New York, and Founding Members and Regional Directors of Investigating Innocence, and are available for interviews or speaking engagements. Contact ImaginePublicity at 843-808-08509 or email firstname.lastname@example.org