Newark, NJ Arson Defense Lawyer
Some fires are accidental. Some fires are started on purpose. Each fire leaves clues that an arson investigator uses to determine if the fire is suspicious. The police or insurance investigator first examines the burned building or vehicle for physical clues that indicate that something does not fit with a conclusion that the fire was accidental. If your car was allegedly stolen and then burned, was the key still in the ignition…could the car have been started without the key?
If your business was having financial problems, was all of the business equipment destroyed in the fire…or had it been removed before the fire happened? The arson investigator also examines the burned item to see if the burn pattern is consistent with what an accidental fire would do to that type of item. Based on this investigation, a circumstantial basis can be developed to charge the crime of Arson.
If you are under investigation or charged with the crime of Arson, consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney before making any statement about what happened. Call Howard Bailey at 973-982-1200 for a free consultation.
Defending an Arson Charge
A successful defense starts with the client not making any statement to the police or an insurance investigator. Anything said by the client can be used against them. Exercise you RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT! A defense investigator and a defense expert witness are often essential to developing a defense to Arson. The prosecutor will use the police investigation, the insurance investigator, and an arson expert to build their proofs that you caused the fire. To effectively challenge the State’s expert, a defense expert needs to be consulted to determine whether there is an alternate explanation that questions the conclusions of the State. Is the burn pattern consistent with the type of material burned, is there evidence of an unexplained accelerant that made the fire burn hotter? These issues need to be examined in the context of any statements you made about what occurred, before a decision is made on what defense strategy needs to be used to protect your rights and freedom.
In a recent case, Howard Bailey represented a client who was charged with the arson of his car after he filed an insurance claim on the ‘stolen’ and burned vehicle. The State used the client’s statements to the insurance investigators when he made the insurance claim to limit the defense arguments that the fire was not purposely set.
Any Court. Any Crime. Any Time.
What you do before you are charged with a crime can limit and impact your ability to defend yourself. If you have committed a crime, do not make statements to anyone about what happened. If you are under investigation, or have been charged with a crime, REMAIN SILENT and say I WANT A LAWYER.
Call Howard Bailey at 973-982-1200 for a free consultation to learn what the options are to protect your rights and freedom.