Jacksonville’s citizens, particularly its youth, make mistakes. Even though the child may have been aware enough of the event to understand what happened, a child may not understand their rights subsequent to that event. If one or one’s loved one has been in a situation like this, one should obtain an experienced attorney to fight the case and ensure their rights are protected.
According to the Florida Times Union, Cristian Fernandez may be subject to a psychologist’s examination and opinion of whether Fernandez understands his constitutional rights, before a Judge will decide on a suppression hearing. Cristian Fernandez was indicted for the sexual assault of his five-year-old half-brother, and the murder of his two-year old half-brother. If the Judge presiding allows a psychologist to interview Fernandez, the prosecution, as well as police, hopes the answers given in that interview will show that Fernandez understood his rights and thus, evidence that might hurt Fernandez would be admitted.
Jacksonville juvenile crimes cases tend to be simple and relatively quick cases to move through the system. However, in the case of Cristian Fernandez, his defense team is not going to give up so easily. The newest issues and possibly the most important to Fernandez’s case are the overarching questions: What exactly does Fernandez understand, and how does that knowledge effect his criminal prosecution?
If the police follow proper procedure by telling the accused their rights, and their attorney explains their rights, then the accused is typically assumed to have understood their rights under the Constitution at the time questioning begins. However, when the accused is barely a teenager, the question of what an adult would understand and what a child would understand comes into play, making one question what Fernandez might or might not understand about his rights.
A reasonable person given the circumstances must understand what one’s rights are before the police begin questioning and use the statements given against the accused in criminal prosecution. In this case, Fernandez’s defense team disagrees with the Prosecution’s take that Fernandez understood what he was saying, being asked, and his rights. Fernandez’s defense team says that a series of answers at the end of the interview proves that Fernandez did not know or understand his rights.
If you are in a situation such as this, do not settle for a mediocre defense attorney. Get an experienced Jacksonville juvenile crimes defense attorney who will fight your case with the best defense possible and the strongest will power available. One should not risk going to jail for a long period of time when an experienced attorney can make sure that their best defense is brought forth and their rights fought for.
The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for years and is here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one requires a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.
Additional Source: New dates set in Cristian Fernandez sex battery case; scope of expert exam at issue, Jim Schoettler, The Florida Times-Union