Consult a CPS Attorney When Legal Assistance Needed
Video Transcribed: Can what you say to child protective services be used against you in a court system later, a criminal case? Hello, my name is Ryan Cannonie, I’m a CPS Defense Lawyer with the CPS Investigation Defense Law office.
Something that’s been asked to me is, well, what I said to the investigator can that be used against me? It’s kind of a weird question because juvenile matters are closed, they’re not open, they’re confidential.
However, there is a mechanism in state statutes to get the juvenile records, those investigation reports, anything like that disclosed in a court proceeding. Now, the way it works is that the person who wants it disclosed, that could either be the prosecutor or the defense, sometimes these reports say good things about you. It just depends on what they say they found when they did the investigation. But you do a motion to get these reports unsealed, they’ll go to a judge.
A judge then can redact portions that… You have to prove that these are necessary to whatever the case is. A judge can then either redact portions or put them under seal, meaning that they can’t be distributed. They can only be used in a very specific set way. There’s a process to it.
However, yes, they can be used against you. Can what you say to a child investigator be used against you? Sometimes. It just depends on how that process goes and whether the judge agrees or not to unseal those.
However, what ends up happening with most people is not that the prosecutor has these DHS records they’re going to throw into a jury’s face in court. What happens is, is as the DHS worker is investigating and asking you questions, there’s some law enforcement just hanging around eavesdropping and they’re listening to the conversation.
Now there’s case law on this, that the law enforcement can’t use DHS investigators or DHS personnel as members of law enforcement. So they can’t say, “Hey, I think this is what’s going on. Go ask him these questions, I’m going to listen in.”
If they do that, then they’re interrogating you without you knowing it, and it just gets down to if you’re in custody or not in custody. If you’re in custody, all that’s going to be thrown out. If DHS comes to talk to you on law enforcement’s behalf.
However, if you’re sitting there in custody, you’re in cuffs, DHS has come and talked to you, law enforcement’s just photographing the scene or something. And as they’re talking to you, they’re just getting your basic information, you make some comments to them that’s overheard by law enforcement, that can be used against you.
There’s a whole analysis on this. So if law enforcement and DHS come out, don’t be like, oh, I can talk to you and you can’t use this. There’s case law on this. There’s a big analysis that goes into it. It’s something you need an attorney to do. It’s not something you can just watch this video, Google it online, and figure it out.
You actually need to see, a lot of it is very fact-specific. And a lot of it deals with not just DHS and law enforcement, but also search and seizure law. So if you find yourself in a situation, either in a criminal case or in a deprived case, and you have questions, then please give us a call. You can go to our websites. We have two, but the one for child protective service questions is CPSinvestigationdefense.com.
If you got on this video, because you were thinking it was more criminal based, go to cpsinvestigationdefense.com. There’s a lot of these DHS matters kind of weave in and out of both family law and criminal law.
So it ends up being questions that you have for both, especially after the video I just made about this, the State V Green case, where parents can now be charged with felony child neglect based on what used to just be a deprived DHS case. So if you have questions, you have concerns, hit one of our websites depending on what your situation is, or call the same number for both, (918) 276-2444. So we can look into your Oklahoma CPS Investigation.