Can a cop arrest you for graffiti if he didn’t see you do it and only someone says they saw you do it?

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Can a cop arrest you for graffiti if he didn’t see you do it and only someone says they saw you do it?

Asked on September 28, 2012 under Criminal Law, Georgia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can be arrested based on another person's testimony, so long as it is sufficiently credible as to create "probable cause" to believe that you did it. There is nothing in the law saying that people may only be arrrested when the police themselves see the crime; indeed, usually the police are NOT the witnesses, since people generally do not commit crimes in front of the the police. Instead, people are arrested because there is evidence, including the testimony of other witnesses, that they committed the crime. You can even be convicted based on another's testimony, though in that case, the testimony must be sufficiently persuasive as to convince a jury "beyond a reasonable doubt" that you did the criminal act.


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