What are your Sixth Amendment rights?

While it can be difficult to remember every single right that you’re granted in the U.S. Constitution, the Sixth Amendment is one that you should pay particular attention to if you’re accused of a criminal offense. Oklahoma residents who are charged with a crime are entitled to their Sixth Amendment rights in the justice system.

What’s included in these Sixth Amendment rights?

While a criminal defense attorney may explain all of the rights that are given to you as part of the Sixth Amendment, there’s one that is of high importance: the right to be confronted by your accuser and any witnesses testifying against you. This was formerly known as the confrontation clause. Underneath this clause, anyone accused of a crime has the right to face all of the prosecution’s witnesses and dispute any of the witnesses’ testimonies.

The right to cross-examination

Most people are familiar with the term cross-examination when it comes to a courtroom. This is the defendant’s time to ask questions to the witnesses that the plaintiff brought before them. During cross-examination, the defendant or their lawyer can challenge the statements the witnesses made that lack truthfulness or are biased in nature.

A look at out-of-court statements

One of the biggest areas that can create cause for an appeal on the defendant’s behalf is out-of-court statements. Sometimes, the prosecution may want to use statements made by people outside of the courtroom as part of their evidence against the defendant in the case. Since the actual person making the statement is not present in front of the defendant during the court hearing, it might be construed as a violation of the confrontation clause.

Being accused of a crime can be an extremely stressful situation. It’s important that you take the time to understand what your rights are as a U.S. resident so that you can ensure that you’re being treated according to the law. It’s always advisable to hire an attorney to help ensure that your rights are being protected according to the U.S. Constitution.