Suspect vs. Accused
“Suspicious” and “accused” are two terms closely related to criminal investigation. It is common to use or listen to them in the midst of a police investigation, which is why people are confused about it; for not understanding the difference between these two concepts. If you too are confused or want some more information, continue reading, because then we explain to you what is the difference between accused and suspect.
Difference between Suspect and Accused
When someone is suspected before the law means that he is being investigated in relation to a crime. The law enforcement agency or prosecution agency suspects that the person in question has committed an offense and searches for evidence that shows whether or not he or she is involved in the offense.
The suspects are subjected to a series of questions that in some cases are very intense, to evaluate the reactions of the subjects. However, something very important that must be clear is that when a criminal case is presented, it is not taken as a suspect to anyone; that is, the suspects are not chosen at random, but taking into consideration a series of elements that could link them in one way or another with what happened. For example, it is common that if a couple is seen having a strong argument and then one of the members is found murdered the other member is suspected because of the relationship between both and the previously observed facts.
It is thus that the suspects are linked to certain criminal acts because the authorities in charge of carrying out the investigation have really strong reasons to consider that those people could have committed the crime.
On the other hand, an accused is a person who is subject to the law on the charge of having committed a crime, in other words, someone is considered as an accused when they have been charged in relation to a criminal act.
The accused are prosecuted once the case has been opened against them and the prosecution and the defendant are presented at the trial. Each of the parties shows the relevant evidence and arguments that support their interests.
The main difference between accused and suspect is that the former does have a confirmed charge against him. In this sense it is important to clarify that accused is not the same as convicted, since it only becomes the latter if the final verdict pleads guilty; just as a suspect is referred to as a defendant if brought to trial. Finally, the rights of suspects and defendants vary depending on the country.