The Most Common Question: Can I Be Arrested for That?

This is probably the most common question Mr. Pham gets asked both in the office and in social situations. That is, someone will approach with a set of facts and the question: can I be arrested for that?

The answer is yes. Anyone can be arrested for anything. The process is particularly disturbing in misdemeanors. With small cases, a person can simply swear a set of facts to a magistrate and based solely on that testimony, a person can be arrested. For example, let’s say Mary’s favorite necklace goes missing and she believes that her housekeeper took it. After all, her housekeeper is the only person to have access to her bedroom. Mary can simply go to a magistrate, describe the situation and demand that an arrest warrant be issued for her housekeeper. More often than not, the magistrate will issue the warrant with little or no investigation. Should it later be determined that Mary’s daughter borrowed the necklace without asking, the housekeeper would be obviously found not guilty. However, given the nature of misdemeanor courts, the police rarely have the time to investigate a petty theft thoroughly, which results in people often getting arrested for offenses that they did not commit.

Unfortunately, in those situations, that arrest record can haunt you. In job applications and apartment background checks, arrests often turn up that can deter the applicant from acceptance. In these background searches, whether performed by law enforcement or by a private company the results are often wrong or incomplete. That is, Mr. Pham has had numerous clients who were arrested on criminal charges, but the background report failed to mention that the case was dismissed and the person was cleared of all involvement. Should someone be arrested in Houston and Harris County, they should seriously consider expunction as a means of clearing their record of the arrest to avoid those types of hindrances.

Hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney like Mr. Pham can often make the difference between incarceration, probation and freedom. If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges for any offense, and want an experienced and aggressive criminal defense lawyer, contact Houston attorney Michael H. Pham at (713) 236-7791.

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