Knowingly making a false accusation about another individual not only exudes poor judgement, but it is against the law. Now, that doesn’t mean that you’ll automatically be convicted, but if law enforcement has reason to believe that you made a false police report, you can certainly be arrested and face significant penalties.
Continue reading to learn more about the possible consequences of making a false accusation as well as the defensive strategies we can use to defend your case if you happen to be charged with this crime.
Penalties for Unsubstantiated False Reporting
False reporting is when you report a crime to the police that hasn’t happened. There are two instances where this occurs most frequently: when someone is being reported for child abuse and when a person falsely accuses someone of sexual assault or rape.
If law enforcement determines that you knew you were making a false accusation, you can be charged with a Class B misdemeanor. This charge is punishable by up to 180 days in jail and fines not to exceed $1,000.
However, if the false accusation resulted in the hindrance of law enforcement or caused harm to another individual, you can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, which means you’ll be facing up to one year in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Building Your Defense
It might come as a surprise that there are actually quite a few defenses that can result in an acquittal for a false accusation charge. The most common defense is that you had reason to believe that the report you made was true and that you did not have any intention of making a false report.
Other defenses might include being under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the report, or having been coerced into making a false report. In any case, your lawyer’s analysis of your case will determine which defense would be most beneficial to the success of your situation.
Contact an Indiana Criminal Defense Lawyer
When you need help beating a false accusation charge, reach out to an experienced Indiana criminal defense lawyer at Rowdy G. Williams Law Firm. You can schedule your initial consultation today by filling out the convenient contact form below or by calling our office directly at 1-812-232-7400.