Most of us are used to having the police get our money and possessions back when they are stolen. But in some cases, it could be the police taking your money and possessions from you.
The police may seize your money or possessions if they believe it serves as evidence in a criminal case. Once this occurs, a big concern will be, how do I get my money back?
Read on to find out about your rights if your money or possessions are seized in a criminal investigation.
Why a Receipt is Important
When possessions or money are taken, the police should issue a receipt to the owner that lists all the items taken and held in custody.
Items may only be removed if a search warrant is issued. The search warrant should be filed and completed with the court clerk’s office no later than five days after the warrant has been fulfilled. After the warrant is filed, a copy is accessible.
In most instances, the receipt will have directions on the back that explain how the owner can go about retrieving his or her items.
In some cases, a receipt will not be given to the owner. This often happens when the owner is placed under arrest. Here, the owner must return to the place of arrest after being released to obtain the paperwork.
If a criminal lawyer has been provided, the lawyer may be given the paperwork.
It is not unusual for the information to be incomplete or incorrect. If this is the case, it is within the owner’s right not to sign the document and to request that the paper be corrected promptly.
Why Items are Taken
When a criminal investigation occurs, items can be seized for several reasons.
If a person is suspected of drug trafficking, anything that is considered evidence can be seized including the drugs themselves and any money believed to be used to pay for or profit from the sale of drugs. If drugs are being hidden in a home, the property can even be seized as evidence.
Items can also be taken into police custody if the police believe the items are in danger of being stolen. If the police believe the person arrested is in danger, they may seize their property to keep it safe from thieves. For example, the police may impound a vehicle if they believe it might be stolen or damaged while a person is in jail.
How to Retrieve Money and Possessions
Retrieving money and possessions that were seized by police is not always easy and the steps you must take will vary according to the reason why the possessions were seized.
For instance, if the possessions were seized for safekeeping, the items can be retrieved fairly easily. Owners will have to go to the police department or clerk’s office depending on where the items are being kept. They will have to present a receipt and ID to get their possessions back.
If the items were seized as contraband, the process for retrieval will be more complicated. A release will be required from the prosecutor and other issues may arise.
The Right Lawyer Will Help Get Your Possessions Back
If your possessions were seized in a criminal investigation, a good lawyer will do what he or she can to help you get them back. If you are looking for a lawyer in the Greenville, S.C. area, the Bannister, Wyatt & Stalvey, LLC team is recommended.
With years of experience in the field of criminal defense, Bannister, Wyatt & Stalvey, LLC are familiar with the rights involved when it comes to seized possessions. They will do all they can to make sure you get your items back safely. Their reputation for excellence ensures that they are on your side and they will work tirelessly to get you a positive outcome.
If you are involved in a criminal case, you need the right lawyer on your side. Call Bannister, Wyatt & Stalvey, LLC to make sure you get the justice you deserve.