What Happens if a Police Officer Lies: The Effectiveness of a Pitchess Motion

By: Wallin & Klarich

Defendants often wonder what they can do when it is just their word against the arresting police officer’s word. One option is to file a Pitchess motion to review the police officer’s personnel record.

A Pitchess motion is a request made by the Defense in a California criminal case, for the personnel records of the arresting officer if the defendant has filed an affidavit alleging the use of excessive force or if there is reason to believe that the officer has a record of fabricating facts. If granted, the motion will expose the police officer’s record of duty and any complaints that may have been made against him or her. The defendant has a right to this information under California state law.

Pitchess motions can be very effective in getting charges dismissed. If the officer has a history of using excessive force or lying, then it is more likely that he or she will repeat these acts in future cases. These motions are particularly important in cases where the only two witnesses were the police officer and the defendant.

If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime, you should call the attorneys at Wallin & Klarich immediately. Our Ventura County criminal defense attorneys have over 30 years experience in handling criminal cases in California. We have the skill and expertise needed to compose and argue Pitchess motions. Hiring an attorney from Wallin & Klarich could mean the difference between jail time and freedom. Our attorneys can be reached via phone at 1-888-749-0034or through our website at www.wklaw.com.

Posted In: Law & Information