Fraud Blocker

How to Defend Yourself Against False Accusations of a Crime in North Carolina?

The criminal justice system in the United States functions on the premise of “innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.” This means that when a person is accused of a crime, the criminal court is to consider the defendant innocent until proven otherwise by the prosecution. The prosecution has the burden of proving guilt by leveraging physical evidence and witness testimony, and it must do so beyond any reasonable doubt.

Unfortunately, the mere accusation of a crime can have a damaging effect on the accused, even when they are entirely innocent. False accusations can and do happen, and they damage the criminal justice system by diminishing resources that could be used for handling legitimate cases. False accusations also diminish police resources as officers may be called for a bogus reason and spend time arresting, booking, and transporting an accused individual who didn’t do anything wrong.

If you have been falsely accused of a crime, it is crucial to know the value of criminal defense counsel you can trust. Do not make the mistake of assuming that hiring a defense attorney makes you look guilty. On the other hand, you should also avoid making the mistake of thinking that if you didn’t do anything wrong, there is no way you could be convicted. It’s an unfortunate fact that many people have been falsely accused and subsequently punished due to a lack of defense representation or insufficient defense counsel.

Falsely Accused of a Crime in NC? How to Defend Yourself

If you are in a situation where you are being accused of a crime that you did not commit in North Carolina, you may be feeling confused and upset. Whether law enforcement is at the core of the accusations, or another person, such as a friend or even a family member, is issuing the charges, you are likely asking yourself how this can be happening.

In such a situation, it is extremely important to be aware of what your rights are, what the potential penalties can be, and what you can do to build a strong legal defense, despite whether your charges are felonies or misdemeanors. Equipping yourself with knowledge and a fearless Wilmington, NC, Criminal Defense Attorney is the most optimal way to defend yourself against false accusations.

Strong Defense Strategies Against North Carolina False Accusations

If you are dealing with a North Carolina false accusation, it’s important to work with your attorney to come up with a strong defense that can prove your innocence. Some common strategies to prove the innocence of those who are falsely accused are: 

  • Collecting thorough evidence. It’s critical to gather any evidence that can show that you are innocent. This can be in the form of videos or photos, messaging records, tapes of calls, texts and emails, and more. Any evidence that can prove weaknesses and show inconsistencies in the accusations against you is valuable.
  • Look into the accuser. Your accuser may be pressing charges against you because they have certain motives, so it’s important to find out what these might be. It’s a good idea to do a background investigation on them and try to understand what might motivate them to press these charges.
  • Have a strong alibi. It’s important to have specific evidence showing that you were not at the place of the crime at the time of the incident. It is helpful to have one or more witnesses who can corroborate this.
  • Conduct a thorough witness cross-examination. Your attorney will need to carry out a thorough cross-examination in order to find any inconsistencies across the testimonies of witnesses. This can weaken the accuser’s argument.
  • Show that you did not have the intent to commit the crime. In the case that the crime you were accused of needs to show intent, you can work on providing evidence to show that you had no reason to carry out the alleged crime.
  • Explore other explanations for what happened. Your lawyer can use the available evidence in the courtroom to explore different narratives that can explain what might have happened, which can ultimately shift the explanation from one that incriminates you.
  • Show that there were false reports. If you and your lawyer can prove that the accuser had negative intentions or that they falsified evidence or reporting to falsely incriminate you, you can bring this to light in front of the jury.
  • Build trust in your character. Show the jury that you have a strong track record as a law-abiding citizen. Use academic and professional awards, credit scores, and testimonies from friends and family to show that you are morally upright and do not have the character to commit the crime you have been accused of.

Based on the details of your case, the defense that you will build accordingly will vary. It’s important to hire an attorney who is highly versed in North Carolina criminal law and who has experience defending people who have been in situations similar to you.

How an Attorney Can Help

It’s important to take full advantage of your right to legal counsel if you have been falsely accused of a crime. While the police will not make arrests for some crimes without evidence, other crimes do not necessarily create easily obtainable physical evidence. Your accuser may have mistaken you for someone else, in which case you will need to prove you are not the person responsible for the crime they reported. It is also possible that your accuser knows you did nothing wrong but has filed a false police report to damage you, both through punishment you do not deserve and harm to your reputation.

If you are arrested on a false accusation, do not try and plead your case to the arresting officers. You are more likely to harm your defense than help it by trying to explain your way out of the situation. The police have no real incentive to assist you, and it is very likely that anything you say could be taken out of context and used against you. Your best option in this situation is to remain silent and comply with the arresting officer’s directions until you are able to speak with a defense attorney.

Once you have legal representation, your attorney can help you gather exculpatory evidence to disprove the accusations against you. They may also seek evidence that proves your accuser knowingly made a false accusation or even falsified evidence. Ultimately, every case is unique, and you could have more opportunities to defend yourself than you initially realize. Working with an experienced criminal defense attorney is the best way to prevent yourself from facing unjust punishment for a crime you did not commit.

After you have disproved a false accusation, your attorney may direct your attention toward taking legal action against your accuser. If they made their accusation in the hope of you being penalized for a crime you did not commit, you have the right to seek accountability for this experience, and the state is likely to file a criminal case against them as well. You may be able to secure compensation for damage to your reputation and/or business, the emotional stress you endured, your legal expenses, and more.


Do You Need to Hire a Defense Attorney to Fight a False Accusation?

If you are falsely accused of a crime, do not assume you can prove your innocence. Circumstantial evidence or even falsified evidence may be stacked against you. Hiring an experienced defense attorney is the best option for fighting false accusations of a crime. You may also have grounds for retaliatory legal action against the party that falsely accused you if they did so maliciously.

Can You Be Accused of a Crime Without Proof?

Yes, it is possible for anyone to be accused of a crime without proof. It’s possible to face a completely false accusation made intentionally to diminish your reputation and subject you to wrongful punishment, or you could be falsely accused without proof due to mistaken identity. However, to be convicted of a crime, your guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, and it would be very difficult for a prosecutor to meet this burden of proof without any evidence.

What Is the Best Way to Prove Your Innocence When Falsely Accused?

The best defense against a false accusation is providing contradictory evidence that proves you could not have committed the crime in question or establishing a solid alibi backed by witness testimony and/or physical evidence. Your defense attorney will carefully review the details of the accusation against you and help you discern any and all defensive elements that you could leverage to your benefit.

Is There a Penalty for Falsely Accusing Someone?

Intentionally filing a false police report in North Carolina is a Class 2 misdemeanor, and the accuser could face up to 60 days in jail. Additionally, state law allows you to file a lawsuit against your accuser if you can prove they knowingly and maliciously filed the accusation against you. Your attorney could help you hold them accountable for your legal expenses; you may also obtain compensation for their intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Can I Press Charges in NC for Being Falsely Accused?

In the state of North Carolina, people who are facing false accusations from someone cannot press charges against the person who accused them. However, the prosecutor might decide to press charges on their own. In the case that the accusations harm you in any way, such as causing your business to suffer based on a ruined reputation, then it might be possible to file a civil suit for defamation.

How Can I Defend Myself Against False Accusations in North Carolina?

If you are facing false accusations, it’s important to stay calm and develop a plan. Getting a lawyer who is knowledgeable in the field of North Carolina criminal law can help you create and flesh out your defense strategy. As a part of this, you will need to collect evidence that shows that you are innocent and keep documentation on all of your activities. Together with your lawyer, you can work to prove your innocence by showing that you had no motives to commit the crime you were accused of.

How Do I Emotionally Handle Being Charged With an NC Crime?

It can be emotionally challenging to handle the repercussions associated with being charged with a crime that you did not commit. In order to protect your emotional well-being, it’s important to set boundaries for yourself and only talk about the case with your lawyer to avoid any situations that could unnecessarily incriminate you. Additionally, it is critical to keep a support network that you can trust and spend time with during this vulnerable period. Lastly, focus on practicing self-care and engaging in activities that feed you spiritually.

How Do Innocent People React When Accused With a Crime in NC?

It’s important to note that all individuals respond differently to being accused of a crime, whether they are innocent or not. Many other factors can influence the way someone would react, such as the severity of the crime and the current mental state of the accused. Innocent individuals who have been charged with a crime should remember to remain calm, keep composure, and let the facts and evidence speak for themselves.

Christina Rivenbark & Associates knows how stressful it can be to face an accusation of a crime you did not commit, and it is easy to feel like the system is stacked against you in this situation. If you need help fighting a false accusation, contact us today for more information about the professional legal services we offer clients.

Get the Representation That You Deserve Today

It can be extremely stressful and disorienting to be charged with a crime that you did not commit. Not only can the situation be financially grueling and take up valuable time and energy that could be spent more productively, but it can be emotionally tolling as well. At Christina Rivenbark & Associates, we understand the stakes associated with any criminal accusation, whether big or small. Therefore, we take each unique case and the associated details incredibly seriously. If you are unsure about how to protect yourself against a false accusation, contact our firm today. We’ve got your back.

Recent Posts



Free Case Review Get The Help You Need

” * ” Indicates Required Fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Our Locations Leland And Wilmington

4009 Oleander Drive Wilmington, NC 28403

110 Old Fayetteville Road Leland, NC 28451