Are the Ottawa Police or Ontario Provincial Police Investigating You?

If you are under investigation by the police, you should seek the guidance and advice of an experienced criminal defence lawyer.  Even if you have not yet been charged or arrested, a criminal defence lawyer can provide you with the help you need, even in these early stages.

There are a variety of reasons why the police investigate individuals.  Regardless of the reason why you are being investigated, it is important for you to know your rights.  A criminal defence lawyer can help you to exercise these rights during the investigation.  You should contact a criminal lawyer if any of the following has happened:

  • You have received a warrant for the police to search your home or workplace
  • The police have questioned your friends, family or coworkers about you
  • You think you may be under police surveillance.

The police use many different investigation methods, so if you think you are under investigation, it is in your best interest to contact a criminal defence lawyer who can further advise you.

It is important to remember that a criminal defence lawyer is there to defend you.  This means that even if charges have not yet been laid, your lawyer may be able to help you avoid arrest and charges altogether.  If you are charged with a crime, your lawyer will have been there from the beginning and will already be abreast of the details of your case.

Hiring a criminal defence lawyer is a means of protecting yourself, and is not an admission of guilt.  Don’t wait until you are charged with a criminal offence to hire a lawyer.  Retaining the services of an experienced criminal defence lawyer as soon as you are investigated by the police will be a source of assurance and protection.

 

 

Ontario Set to Toughen Impaired Driving Consequences Starting December 1

OTTAWA CRIMINAL DEFENCE LAWYER – An arrest in Ontario for Impaired Driving, Over 80, or Sample Refusal is already a serious and stressful experience. At the end of this month, these cases are going to become even more serious.

The Ontario government issued a press release announcing a scheduled change to their vehicle impoundment policy. Effective December 1, drivers arrested in connection with an alcohol-related driving offence will be subject to a seven-day vehicle impoundment – for which the vehicle’s owner must pay the towing and storage bill.

This new impoundment policy extends to those found driving with suspended licenses, but it also effects:

  • Drivers found driving with a blood alcohol concentration of over 80 milligrams.
  • Drivers who refuse to supply a breath sample to a police officer.
  • Drivers required to have an interlock ignition device, and who are found driving without one installed.

After December 1, if you are arrested for an alcohol-related driving offence, the arresting officer will have to determine whether or not the vehicle is subject to impoundment. If he or she decides that an impoundment is necessary, you will be given a “Notice of Impoundment” and your car will be towed immediately from the site of the arrest.

In my practice, I fight on behalf of many drivers who were wrongfully arrested for Impaired Driving, Over 80, or Sample Refusal in Ontario. This seven-day impoundment period immediately following the arrest is both an inconvenience and a financial hit that will cause stress to the driver before he or she has a chance to start fighting their driving offence charges.

Have you been arrested for an alcohol-related driving offence in Ontario? You should speak with a top criminal defence lawyer as soon as possible – one who can help you understand your options and fight your charges. For more information, contact the Ottawa criminal defence lawyers at Auger Hollingsworth by email [email protected] or by phone at (613) 233-4529.

What Should I do If I am Arrested by the Police?

As an Ottawa criminal defence lawyer, I am often asked what someone should do if he or she is arrested by the police in connection with a crime.

If you are ever arrested by the police for a crime like fraud, tax evasion, assault, impaired driving or even homicide, the worst thing you can do is to talk to the police about “what happened”.  Protesting your innocence to the police will not get you anywhere and may make things much more difficult for your criminal defence lawyer.

Instead of trying to talk your way out of the criminal charges, politely but firmly indicate that you would like to speak with a criminal defence lawyer.  You really should not say more than that.  Even small comments can be used by the Crown against you in a trial.

Make the most of your telephone call with a criminal defence lawyer.  Keep in mind that you do not only get one call as they say on television.  If you do not reach your counsel of choice, in many cases you can leave a message for a return call or select another lawyer of your choice to try to call.

During the call, the lawyer will probably not want you to talk about the nitty gritty of your case.  Instead, the criminal defence lawyer will want to explain to you how to cope with the arrest process and what to expect.  The strategy for defending against the charges will be developed after the arrest process is completed and you are either released on bail or moved to the detention centre.

While your arrest is processed, you may be placed in a holding cell.  In Ottawa, most areas of the cell blocks are video taped. In some circumstances there may be audio as well.  Your behaviour during that process will be recorded.  Accordingly, you should be calm, cool and collected.

An arrest for a criminal charge is scary and undesirable.  However, with thoughtful advice from an experienced criminal defence lawyer like Richard Auger, the disruption to your life can be minimized.

Arrested for Impaired Driving in Ontario? Write Down Your Story ASAP!

OTTAWA CRIMINAL DEFENCE LAWYER – If you are arrested for Impaired Driving, Over 80, or Sample Refusal in Ontario, the police will take you off the road and to a police station.

After you’re released from the police station, your first instinct might be to tell your family or close friends the “whole story” of your ordeal. As a criminal defence lawyer who has handled many driving offence cases, I can give you some important advice: keep your recollection of the events private, and discuss it only with your lawyer.

Instead of retelling the story verbally, to a friend or family member, you would be wise to write detailed notes about the incident. It’s important to include these crucial details:

  • Which foods you ate on the day of the event (and when you ate them), as well as any alcoholic beverages you consumed.
  • Where and when you were pulled over and arrested.
  • Who was with you at the time (include their names and telephone numbers).
  • What was said between yourself and the police, at the roadside and on the way to the station.
  • Whether or not you had access to a phone at the time of the arrest.
  • The type of tests that were administered, and when (e.g. was a breathalyzer used?)

These notes give you an opportunity to organize your memories of the incident, and they also provide you and your lawyer with a valuable reference for building your defence.

Have you been arrested and charged with an Ontario driving offence? Another early step you should take is contacting an experienced criminal defence lawyer, who can help you proceed with your case. For more information, contact the Ottawa lawyers at Auger Hollingsworth by email [email protected] or by phone at (613) 233-4529.

Ottawa Criminal Lawyer: Are you Under Arrest?

In Canada, a police officer has the power to arrest a person if the police officer has reasonable grounds to believe that the person has committed a criminal offence.   The arresting police officer may or may not place handcuffs on the person under arrest.

Suspicious circumstances alone are not reasonable grounds to arrest a person. The officer must have enough facts or evidence available that a reasonable person would  believe that the suspect has committed or is about to commit an offence.

A reasonable person placed in the position of the officer must be able to conclude that there were indeed reasonable and probable grounds for the arrest.  However, at the same time, the police do not need to show a strong case that would result in a conviction in order to effect an arrest.

Take Note:

A person placed under arrest by the police should not challenge the grounds for the arrest. A person who challenges or resists arrest may face further criminal offences.  Whether or not the arrest was lawful should be discussed with an experienced criminal defence lawyer after the fact when mounting a defence.  You are very unlikely to talk the police out of arresting you.  However, there is a high probability that you will make matters worse.

Not all persons charged with criminal offences are physically arrested by the police. For example, the police may simply serve the accused person with an Appearance Notice.  This does not require an arrest or a trip to the police station.

Section 501 of the Criminal Code provides that an Appearance Notice must state: the name of the accused, the criminal charge and the time, date and place where the accused must attend court.

In addition, the Appearance Notice can require the accused to attend a location on a certain date for fingerprinting. The accused must attend on such a date for fingerprinting and failure to do so can result in additional criminal charges.

If the accused does not attend the court appearance, the court can issue a warrant for arrest and the police may then arrest the person and bring them to court in custody.

If you have been arrested, or if you have received an Appearance Notice, you should immediately take steps to retain an experienced criminal defence lawyer.  The propriety of your arrest is one of the areas the lawyer will explore in advancing your defence to the criminal charges against you.