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Why Should the Pre-Sentence Investigation Report Be Challenged?

While determining sentencing, the judge in your case will rely partially on the information in your pre-sentencing investigation report, which is otherwise known as a PSIR. Before this report is taken into consideration, it should be reviewed thoroughly by you and your St. Augustine criminal defense attorney. Inaccuracies in the report could not only affect the sentence that you receive, but they could affect your security classification if you have to serve time in prison.St.-Augustine-Criminal-Defense-Attorney-300x200.jpg

How Is the PSIR Used?
The PSIR is used by the trial judge to arrive at the appropriate sentence. It is also used by prison officials to determine security classifications for prison. Depending on what is in the report, you may be sent to a minimum-security prison or to one with more extensive security.

Challenging Inaccuracies
It is crucial for you and your attorney to receive a copy of the PSIR well before sentencing occurs. That way, you will have enough time to go over it thoroughly. While reviewing the PSIR, you may run across inaccuracies. Even if these inaccuracies won't affect the sentence that you receive, they could have an impact on your eventual security classification. For instance, the report may erroneously state that you were involved in violent altercations in the past, which could disqualify you from going to a minimum-security prison.

Through the Federal Rules of Evidence or the constitutional due process, defendants have the right to receive their PSIRs with plenty of time to review them with their attorneys. If your attorney receives the report and there's not enough time to conduct a thorough review, he or she should request a continuance. It's not unusual for unsubstantiated assertions from the prosecution to end up in PSIRs, and your attorney should tell the judge that you need time to review it.

In the event that inaccuracies are found, your lawyer should object in writing and provide plenty of details. Whenever possible, witness statements, trial evidence and other supporting information should be included in the objection.

Protect Your Rights With Help From a St. Augustine Criminal Defense Attorney
If you've been charged with a crime, it's crucial to obtain qualified legal representation. The St. Augustine criminal defense lawyers at Attorneys at Canan Law are ready to assist you. Contact us at 904-824-9402 now to get started.

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