How should I handle the court of public opinion?

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Facing sexual assault accusations is difficult enough, but once the situation becomes public, you now have much more to deal with. The court of public opinion can be quite harsh, and dealing with the backlash can be stressful.

You may face many consequences once your charges become public. These may include losing your job or becoming an outcast in your community. And these things can happen before you ever go to court. Dealing with the situation can be tough, but there are some guidelines you can follow to at least protect yourself.

Stay quiet

Your best bet is to not talk about the charges against you or the situation at all. You should make no comments to anyone except your attorney. Staying quiet is one of the basic rights that protect you against incriminating yourself. Anything you say in public becomes usable by the prosecutor.

It can be difficult to stay quiet when people are saying horrible things about you. You may want to set the record straight or defend yourself. But the public arena is not the place to do that. Save your arguments for court.

Put someone else in charge

You should use a spokesperson or your attorney to confront the public for you. Having someone else deal with the situation can make it easier for you to not say something you will regret. Plus, it takes that stress off your hands. You can focus on your case instead.

Keep in mind that you do not owe anything to anyone. The public will make its decisions even without evidence. You cannot let it impact you. Stay focused on your defense because the court’s decision is the most important.


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