The Fifth Amendment privilege against being called as a witness is available only to a charged defendant in the case against that defendant. For other witneses there is no privilege not to be called to the stand absent a showing that the subpoena is improperly issued. Otherwise the witness must appear in response to the subpoena and must assert the Fifth Amendment privilege on the witness stand in response to particular questions. The court may require that a witness's assertion of his or her Fifth Amendment privilege be withheld from the jury. If you are arrested or charged with a crime or under investigation for a crime, contact Christine McGuire, the San Jose, Santa Cruz, Criminal Defense Attorney.