How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Alex J. Esq. Your Own Question

Alex J. Esq.
Alex J. Esq., Attorney at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 12690
Experience:  Experienced Licensed Attorney / Criminal Law Mentor
Type Your Criminal Law Question Here...
Alex J. Esq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I was arrested on a felony charge but my case was dismissed

Resolved Question:

I was arrested on a felony charge but my case was dismissed b/c of a false arrest and prosecutorial misconduct. I would like now to sue. As the lawsuit would be against either the police or the DA's office I would need a lawyer who handles civil rights litigation. However there are so few "civil rights" lawyers in the area and so I was wondering if other litigation lawyers might also be able to handle this type of case.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Alex J. Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Alex Esquire :

Hello. My name is XXXXX XXXXX X will be glad to help you.

Alex Esquire :

Are you online with me?

Customer:

yes

Alex Esquire :

Welcome to JustAnswer.com

Alex Esquire :

I am sorry to hear about your unfortunate experience with police and the state.

Alex Esquire :

Are you online with me?

Customer:

yes I am. I'm here

Alex Esquire :

Can you please tell me if have spend any time being incarcerated for this charge?

Customer:

I was in jail for 19 days. Actually I ended up pleading guilty in response to numerous instances of police fraud and prosecutorial cut corners, but afterward we had the guilty plea reversed and case dismissed. The DA herself filed the motion on my behalf. It is rare that this happens, but it did in my own instance. I also ended up serving a two year probation. But now case is dismissed

Alex Esquire :

Did the order setting aside your conviction stated that it was being set aside for police misconduct / fraud and prosecutorial misconduct?

Customer:

It was actually a deferred sentence I received, not a conviction. I never actaully looked at the actual motion. In fact I filed a motion myself--per se, and the court sent a document back stating "denied as moot" and that the guilty plea had been reversed and case dismissed on 12/20/12. Not its off my record. No, i never saw the official document. It was an invalid plea, botXXXXX XXXXXne

Customer:

A guilty plea can be reversed only if it was made involunarily or not knowingly

Alex Esquire :

Were you allowed to enter into a deferred prosecution as a first time offender?

Customer:

yes, i was a first time offender. I recieved an extremely light sentence, but that wasn't the point...I shouldn't have been arrested in the first place

Alex Esquire :

Did your plea state that the prosecution of your case and the sentence would be deferred and upon completion of your probation sentence the case against you would be dismissed?

Customer:

No. Only I would have to seal it. What happened was soon after my probation ended I mailed a report to the DA in charge of my case listing all the police errors--everything was in writing. These errors were non-debatable. The Da apparently then took time out to write up and file a motion on my behalf with the District court for a reversal of plea. The District court reversed the plea and then dismissed the case

Alex Esquire :

That is in fact unusual move by the DA

Alex Esquire :

What was the reversed conviction for?

Customer:

Yes, very unusual. I put pressure on her by constructing a website and going public

Alex Esquire :

very interesting and creative!

Customer:

Anyway now I would like to sue. And am looking for a lawyer

Alex Esquire :

What was the reversed conviction for?


Customer:

It was felony stalking. But aside from the police errors I was being lied about and the was misunderstood. Part of the reason I pled guilty (actually I wanted to pled no contest) was the DA knew about all the lies and was continueng with the case. Part of the onus was on herself

Alex Esquire :

thank you for this follow up.

Alex Esquire :

When did you plea guilty to this charge?

Alex Esquire :

I mean what was the date?

Customer:

Originally I plead "not guilty", then finally I agreed to plead "no contest" but the judge at the hearing would only allow a guilty plea. It was in the fall of 2010

Alex Esquire :

let me check on the statute of limitation for you.

Alex Esquire :

Was this in Colorado?

Customer:

yes

Customer:

I think I read "three years" somewhere

Alex Esquire :

I am afraid that the SOL under the state law would be 1 year.

Alex Esquire :

Please give me a minute to further research to see the SOL under the federal law

Customer:

See, I don't understand this. I read online about inmates who have been incarcerated for over a decade say, new evidence comes up, their conviction gets overturned, and then they sue. They sue, and yet it was over ten years since they were arrested falsely

Alex Esquire :

It is also 2 year SOL even the the civil rights violation claim pursued in federal court in Colorado

Customer:

what is SOL?

Alex Esquire :

Statute of Limitations from the time of incident.

Customer:

is it two years since the false arrest, or two years since the false arrest was overturned?

Alex Esquire :

2 years from the false arrest

Customer:

wow

Alex Esquire :

You see, your situation is different than situation of someone who was falsely convicted lets say for rape or murder and then the newly available DNA evidence cleared the inmate.

Alex Esquire :

The difference is that the DNA evidence were not available at the time of the conviction and most wrongfully accused people were convicted at trial and did not voluntarily take a plea.

Customer:

A reversal of sentence is a reversal of sentence. In both instances the authorities messed up though, right?

Alex Esquire :

No

Alex Esquire :

I am afraid that is an incorrect interpretation of the law

Customer:

So basically I have to pay for the authorities being crooks. Surely this is so rule to accomodate for this

Alex Esquire :

In your case, your conviction was not reverses, but simply set aside and the case was dismissed on the motion of the DA, but not on appeal or by the review by the court.

Alex Esquire :

Let me ask you this.

Alex Esquire :

Have you consulted with any local civil rights attorney yet?

Customer:

My plea was reversed, and then the case was dismissed after plea was reversed.

Alex Esquire :

Plea is not reversed, but said aside

Alex Esquire :

set asid*

Alex Esquire :

Set Aside*

Alex Esquire :

sorry I am having an issue with my keyboard.

Customer:

Yes, I talked with one lawyer when I was writing up my appeal and told him I wanted reversal of plea b/c I wanted afterward to sue. The lawyer said that was not a bad idea, and gave me some pointers. Yesterday I contacted a civil rights lawyer online but he hasn't gotten back to me

Alex Esquire :

a plea or conviction can be reversed only by an appellate court's decision / order.

Alex Esquire :

Well, you would want this lawyer to check on couple of things.

Alex Esquire :

Statute of Limitations is one and also the fact that you voluntarily plead guilty might lessen your chances of successfully pursuing a claim.

Customer:

It was an involuntary plea made in response to police fraud and cut corners by the da

Alex Esquire :

also, the fact that you were only incarcerated for 19 days (I know it can feel like an eternity) would make it difficult to prove any serious direct financial damages.

Alex Esquire :

Please understand, that I am on your side and I am not here to argue with you, but at the same time I do have professional obligation to provide JA customers with correct answers, even if such answer is not favorable to the customer.

Alex Esquire :

Were you represented by local counsel when you entered the plea?

Customer:

Yes--my lawyer urged me to accept the plea bargain

Alex Esquire :

Was this a private defense counsel or a public defender?

Customer:

It is indeed a rare situation. Some lawyers I have talked with on just answer have told me that I for the record would never be able to reverse my plea, that there was such thing as "finality of judgment". But I got it reversed anyway.

Customer:

It was private counsel

Alex Esquire :

That is another fact that would play heavily against you in this case.

Alex Esquire :

As much as I hate to tell you this

Alex Esquire :

I think you might be still confusing the reversal of conviction of sentence or plea with such being set aside on the state's motion.

Alex Esquire :

By the way, I am not telling you that you absolutely do not have any legal recourse in this case, I am just pointing out the potential obstacles and issues that you might have to face and hopefully overcome.

Customer:

Let's say for the sake of it that it was a "reversal" of sentence...what kind of chance would then I have?

Alex Esquire :

I can't estimate your specific chances, however generally is sentence is reversed, due to the newly discovered evidence, such as the murder and rape conviction which occurred prior to the DNA testing being available, then it would be possible to pursue a claim, however not only you would have to prove that the evidence that you are introducing in your claim were not available at the time you took the plea, but also you would have to show injury / damages that you have suffered.

Customer:

Okay.

Alex Esquire :

So the big cases where wrongfully accused people end up collecting millions, are usually based on many years spent in prisons

Alex Esquire :

Does that make sense?

Customer:

I suppose. Well, thank you anyway for all your information. I'll give you an excellent rating, for sure

Alex Esquire :

I am very sorry that I could not give you more promising answer, but I think I would be providing a disservice to you, if I was to tell you what you wanted to hear and not provide you with a truthful answer, that reflect reality.

Alex Esquire :

Also, to answer your other question.

Alex J. Esq., Attorney at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 12690
Experience: Experienced Licensed Attorney / Criminal Law Mentor
Alex J. Esq. and 7 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Your Expert advise has provided insight on a difficult situation. Thank you so much for the prompt response. I will definitely recommend your website to my friends. Norma Pensacola, FL
< Last | Next >
  • Your Expert advise has provided insight on a difficult situation. Thank you so much for the prompt response. I will definitely recommend your website to my friends. Norma Pensacola, FL
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Fran L.

    JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor

    Satisfied Customers:

    8061
    18 yrs of NYC public defense. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/retiredlawyer/2012-6-6_19326_franL.64x64.jpg Fran L.'s Avatar

    Fran L.

    JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor

    Satisfied Customers:

    8061
    18 yrs of NYC public defense. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    2079
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/NA/nathanmoorelaw/2011-5-31_21375_headshotbig.64x64.jpg Nate's Avatar

    Nate

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1625
    Over 10 years of criminal defense practice.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1434
    30 years legal experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PH/philip.simmons/2012-6-7_161915_BIGPhilipSimmons.64x64.jpg P. Simmons's Avatar

    P. Simmons

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1418
    16 yrs. of experience including criminal law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/marshadjd/2009-6-1_194320_marshajd.jpg Marsha411JD's Avatar

    Marsha411JD

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1380
    Licensed attorney with 27 yrs. exp. in criminal law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RO/RobertJDFL/2012-6-6_175352_7538220120606.64x64.jpg RobertJDFL's Avatar

    RobertJDFL

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1300
    Experienced in multiple areas of the law.