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ScottyMacEsq
ScottyMacEsq, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
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Im writing a novel, so this situation is only in my imagination.

Resolved Question:

I'm writing a novel, so this situation is only in my imagination.

My character, a P.I., sees a murder victim. He touches her neck, feels no pulse, calls police. The PI has been set up: killer has planted some of PI's DNA on the body. No rape, but some of PI's hair and epithelials taken earlier from his apartment are on the victim's clothes.

Would police necessarily make an arrest at this point? (I'm guessing not yet.) If not, and PI hires a lawyer, what questions would the lawyer ask?

Thank you very much.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 10 months ago.

ScottyMacEsq :

Thank you for using JustAnswer. I am researching your issue and will respond shortly.

ScottyMacEsq :

First of all, no, the police would not arrest until there was probable cause to do so. Now this could be when the DNA comes back and the DNA is in a place that could not have been subject to the PI's touch (neck, etc...) But there generally would also have to be some motive for him doing so.

ScottyMacEsq :

As for questions that a lawyer would asK: the lawyer would ask about the events generally speaking, leading up to and after the situation. There would be questions about an alibi, where he was at the time. There would be questions about any sexual relationship with the victim or the victim's family members, acquaintances, etc...

ScottyMacEsq :

There would also be questions about alternate theories of who could have done it.

ScottyMacEsq :

Many criminal lawyers are VERY skeptical, and typically it's not about finding out whether or not their client did it. Rather, it's about poking holes in the prosecutors case.

Customer:

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX vic is lying on the kitchen floor with the PI's business card sticking out of her mouth. Some of his DNA is on the woman's panties, but no semen. Placed by the killer, of course. He gets it by breaking into pi's apartment earlier.

ScottyMacEsq :

The attorney would go over the scene and ask why the PI thinks that the business card was in her mouth. At that point it would be pretty clear that someone was framing the PI or that the PI was stupid enough to leave his "calling card" (literally) at the scene.

ScottyMacEsq :

That would need to be explained in court, so the PI would certainly ask that question.

ScottyMacEsq :

(sorry, the attorney would ask that question)

ScottyMacEsq :

To be honest, if you want to get a good idea of attorney-client interactions, I would suggest Michael Connelly's "Lincoln Lawyer" series. While this is a picture of more extreme felony situations (most criminal lawyers are bogged down in DWIs and petty crime situations) the questioning and line of investigation is pretty darn accurate.

Customer:

I'm thinking the same, that it's an obvious frame, and police are inclined to think the same. They know he's not an idiot. Now he has to plausibly id who might do this to him.

Customer:

Yes, I will look at that series. Thanks so much for your help.

ScottyMacEsq :

Exactly. And in such a situation, it might be that the police would not arrest him, unless they thought that the PI was trying to "overthink" them. That is, if it's so obvious that it's "not him", maybe that's what he was trying to get them to think in the first place, and maybe that would be motive for arresting him,.

ScottyMacEsq :

My pleasure.If you have any other questions, please let me know. If not, and you have not yet, please rate my answer AND press the "submit" button, if applicable. Please note that I don't get any credit for my answer unless and until you rate it a 3, 4, 5 (good or better). Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX good luck to you!

Customer:

Yes, I'll give you top rating. You were quick and helpful.

ScottyMacEsq :

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX good luck to you!

ScottyMacEsq, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 11555
Experience: Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
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