Your Rights After a Homicide Arrest in Las Cruces

By Brock Benjamin
Founding Attorney

Facing homicide charges in Las Cruces may be one of the most frightening experiences of your life. After you’re charged, people may jump to conclusions, make assumptions about your guilt, and treat you like a lesser human being. However, the U.S. Constitution and applicable state laws mean you have legal rights, rights that must be protected. 

At The Benjamin Law Firm, we are passionate about helping those charged with homicide in Las Cruces protect themselves. That means helping individuals understand their legal rights following a homicide arrest. 

Your Rights After a Homicide Arrest in Las Cruces 

Homicide arrests and subsequent interrogations by law enforcement are not what popular media makes them out to be. You can jeopardize your case and freedom if you do not understand and exercise your legal rights following an arrest. Essential rights you must be aware of to protect yourself include: 

The Right to Remain Silent 

After a homicide arrest, law enforcement must read you your Miranda Rights. These are your fundamental rights following an arrest as established by law. One of the first rights law enforcement must make you aware of is your right to remain silent. Anything you say to law enforcement can and will be used against you in court. You are not obligated to answer any questions posed to you by law enforcement. It is always in your best interest to only answer questions once you have secured legal representation. 

The Right to Legal Representation

You do not have to figure out the complicated New Mexico criminal justice system alone. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot pay for an attorney, one must be appointed to represent you. Seeking immediate legal representation is crucial and can significantly impact the outcome of your situation. 

The Right to Make a Phone Call

Under New Mexico Statute § 31-1-5 (2021), after an arrest, you also have the right to make three phone calls within 20 minutes of your arrival at the police station. Your first call should always be to an aggressive criminal defense attorney who can review your situation, protect your rights, and potentially help you arrange a bond, depending on the specifics of your case. 

Presumption of Innocence

Social media and the 24/7 news cycle have turned the legal process into a must-watch TV. As such, many people glued to a homicide case pass judgment before all the facts emerge. Under the law, an individual is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. The prosecution has the obligation to establish your guilt. You do not have to prove your innocence.

Right to Speedy Trial

The criminal justice process can feel exhausting and time-consuming. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, courts have been bogged down by an influx of cases. However, you have the right to a speedy trial, which means the state must bring your case to trial within a reasonable time frame. This right ensures you cannot be held in pretrial detention for an extended period without some resolution of your case. Just remember, the meaning of a “reasonable time frame” may vary depending on the nature and jurisdiction of the case.

An Experienced New Mexico Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help 

You may have other legal rights like the right to bail, the right to confidentiality, and protection against unlawful searches and seizures after a homicide arrest. The criminal justice process can be confusing and complicated, so you need a Las Cruces criminal defense lawyer working for you as soon as possible. At The Benjamin Law Firm, we’ll tenaciously protect your rights and move quickly to build a compelling and strategic defense plan for you.

Contact our office today and request a confidential legal consultation. We are ready to defend you.

About the Author
Brock Benjamin is board-certified in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.  His practice is primarily state and federal criminal law and appeals.Brock 

Posted in: Criminal Defense