Double jeopardy protection is an important protection for people accused of crimes. This protection prevents you from facing trial twice for the same or similar charges based on the same facts following a conviction or acquittal. This right is given to individuals in the Fifth Amendment of the United States.
Not all cases qualify for double jeopardy protection. For example, if a proceeding doesn’t put you in jeopardy of a conviction, it doesn’t count. Double jeopardy protection applies to felonies, juvenile delinquency cases and misdemeanors.
Not all cases of dismissals qualify a person for double jeopardy protections. For example, if the case is dismissed at a defendant’s request but not because of the evidence being insufficient, the court can choose to prosecute the individual.
Remember that every defendant has a right to a single appeal following a conviction. If you go through an appeal and have a conviction reversed for insufficient evidence, that is an acquittal and restricts further prosecution. However, if you appeal your case and not due to a lack of evidence, the prosecution may have the case retried against you without violating your rights.
Our website has more information about what to do if you’ve been accused of a crime and want to protect your rights. You should never have to worry about being tried for the same crime more than once in the majority of situations. If you’re concerned that your rights are being violated, it’s within your rights to speak with an attorney about the case. If your rights have been violated, then the case may be able to be dismissed based on double jeopardy rules.