Q What types of cases does your law firm handle?
A We represent clients in a variety of criminal and traffic matters, including DWI, Speeding, Misdemeanors and Felonies. We work with post-conviction criminal clients in cases dealing with Probation Hearings, Parole Hearings, Governor’s Pardons and Expunctions. We handle Personal Injury matters relating to Auto Accidents and other Personal Injury claims. Additionally, we handle Real Estate Closings, Last Wills & Testaments and various types of Civil and Business Litigation.
Q How long have you been practicing law?
A Attorney Don Vaughan has been practicing law for 40 years.
Q What should I do if I am stopped in my car by the police?
A Stop the car in a safe place as quickly as possible. Turn off the car, turn on the internal light, open the window part way and place your hands on the wheel. Be polite to the officer. Upon request, show police your driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance. If an officer asks to look inside your car, you can refuse to consent to the search. But if police believe your car contains evidence of a crime, your car can be searched without your consent in many cases. Do not argue or fight with the officer. Both drivers and passengers have the right to remain silent. If you are a passenger, you can ask if you are free to leave. If the officer says yes, sit silently or calmly leave. Even if the officer says no, you have the right to remain silent. If you are arrested or charged with a crime, you should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Q What should I do if the police come to my home?
A In most cases you do not have to let them in unless they have a warrant. Ask the officer to slip the warrant under the door or hold it up to the window so you can inspect it. Do not argue or fight with the officer. A search warrant allows police to enter the address listed on the warrant, but officers can only search the areas and for the items listed. An arrest warrant allows police to enter the home of the person listed on the warrant if they believe the person is inside. A warrant of removal/deportation (ICE warrant) does not allow officers to enter a home without consent. Even if officers have a warrant, you have the right to remain silent. If you choose to speak to the officers, step outside and close the door.
Q What should I do if I am arrested?
A Do not resist arrest, even if you believe the arrest is unfair. Say you wish to remain silent and ask for a lawyer immediately. Don’t give any explanations or excuses. If you can’t pay for a lawyer, you have the right to a free one. Don’t say anything, sign anything or make any decisions without a lawyer. You have the right to make a local phone call. The police cannot listen if you call a lawyer. Prepare yourself and your family in case you are arrested. Memorize the phone numbers of your family and your lawyer. Make emergency plans if you have children or take medication.