Family Law and Estate Planning Attorneys, helping families through the process of legal transitions

Serving Central Minnesota From Our Location in St. Cloud


Were You Falsely Accused of Assault in Minnesota? Here’s What to Do

Remember: Just because you were accused of a crime doesn’t mean you’re guilty. The best thing to do after being charged is reach out to an experienced criminal defense lawyer to start building your case. Give us a call at (320) 497-4416 to get started.

Few situations are as scary as being falsely accused of a crime, especially when that crime is assault. In addition to ruining your reputation, an assault conviction can devastate your personal life, limit future job opportunities and even result in jail time. That’s a hefty price to pay for any crime, let alone one you didn’t commit.

If you’ve been falsely accused of assault, you’re probably feeling embarrassed, discouraged and unsure of how to move forward. Don’t give up hope just yet—an experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to remedy the situation.

At Toepfer at Law, we understand that there are two sides to every story, and we’re committed to telling yours. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys can review your situation, gather evidence and chart the best legal course forward. Keep reading to learn how our firm can defend your name and protect your future.

Your criminal record is the legal report card of your behavior. And just like grades, it’s much easier to prevent something from being entered into the record than it is to remove something that’s already there. Luckily, we can help. Contact us online to schedule a consultation.


What Are False Allegations?

A false allegation is when someone accuses you of a crime you didn’t commit. This is also called false reporting, and it is considered a serious crime. Regardless, false allegations happen frequently, especially in regards to violent crimes, and can result in wrongful convictions.

Why Do People Get Falsely Accused of a Crime?

Research suggests that trauma memories may be more vulnerable to misrecollection than other types of memories, especially if the person has PTSD-like flashbacks that cause them to re-experience the event over and over. With each subsequent re-experience, they may unintentionally add new details that, over time, become part of the original memory.

This research shouldn’t detract from the testimonies of brave victims who come forward; many victims of violent crimes remember the events with clarity. Rather, these findings should act as a reminder that the human mind is fallible, and as a result, some people make false accusations believing them to be true.

However, misrecollection is only one of the explanations for false accusations. False reporting may also stem from one of the following:

  • Mistaken identity. This happens when the accuser unintentionally misidentifies the person committing the crime.
  • Malicious intent. This happens when a person intentionally misleads authorities by making a knowingly false allegation. In some instances, they do this to gain the upper hand in child custody disputes or to get back at someone.
  • Official misconduct. This occurs when prosecutors or police abuse their power to arrest or charge someone with an offense.
  • Misleading forensic evidence. An example of this could include exaggerating statistical claims to give more weight to their statements.

False accusations can happen at different points throughout the legal process. They may occur when an accuser misidentifies someone in a police line-up; when police ask misleading questions during an interview; and when scientific evidence is interpreted incorrectly in the lab.

How to Defend Yourself from False Assault Allegations

If you’ve been falsely accused of assault, the first thing you need to realize is the gravity of the situation. Without a strong, compelling defense, you could end up being the victim of a wrongful conviction and serving jail time.

If you’ve been accused of false accusations, there’s a good chance you have some tough days ahead. After your arrest, consider taking the following precautions:

  • Remain silent and refuse to be interrogated without an attorney present.
  • Hire a top Minnesota criminal defense attorney to start working on your case.
  • Realize that just because you’re innocent doesn’t mean you’ll go free.

Once you’ve secured a top-notch criminal defense attorney, you can begin building your case together. Depending the on the particulars of your situation, your lawyer may pursue the following actions:

  • Conduct a pre-file investigation. A pre-file investigation is when a law firm investigates allegations before criminal charges are filed for the purpose of gathering evidence that favors the accused. This process may involve interviewing witnesses, finding new witnesses to ask about false accusations, searching background records, gathering evidence, collecting information about the accuser’s credibility and more.
  • Undermine the accuser’s credibility. This is also called “impeaching the accuser,” and it typically occurs at trial during cross-examination. Your defense lawyer will try to present evidence that reflects poorly on the accuser’s character or undermines their knowledge or credibility on a topic.
  • File a civil suit. A malicious prosecution claim is a civil cause of action designed to go after people who file frivolous lawsuits. In this situation, your defense lawyer will attempt to prove that the defendant filed a frivolous claim against you, not to win, but for some other purpose (like harassment). They will also try to prove that you suffered damages as a result and deserve compensation.

These are just some of the tools that an experienced criminal defense attorney may use to prove your innocence. However, all cases are different, and your lawyer will cater their legal strategy around the specifics of your situation.

We Can Help Protect Your Future

Being accused of a crime—especially one you didn’t commit—has the potential to ruin your life. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you don’t need an aggressive criminal defense attorney just because you’re innocent; your charge could still result in conviction.

At Toepfer at Law, we understand that being falsely accused of assault can upend your life and leave you unsure of where to turn. Luckily, you don’t have to go through it alone. Call us at (320) 497-4416 to speak with an experienced Minnesota criminal defense attorney and start rebuilding your life.

Contact Us

Toepfer at Law

11 Seventh Ave N Suite 203
St. Cloud, Minnesota 56303

Phone (320) 497-4416 Fax (320) 295-7813
CONTACT US Safety Exit