If you or someone you know is put under arrest, it is important to call a criminal defense lawyer right away. This is not something to delay on because an attorney can provide immediate assistance by defending one’s rights. It is a common misconception that an attorney will only help after scheduling a trial. There are certain steps that one needs to take immediately following the arrest that can actually make the process easier.
First, it is important to protect the rights of the accused. When an officer makes an arrest, they need to read the accused their Miranda rights and inform them of their right to an attorney. We recommend that anyone accused exercises those rights and not speak without an attorney present.
Otherwise, they may try to question the accused that can sometimes be in an oppressive manner. This often leads to the accused saying things that they otherwise might not.
A criminal defense attorney can sometimes speak with the prosecutor in advance of filing charges. This creates an opportunity to negotiate and remove certain charges from the very beginning. For example, a misdemeanor charge is preferable since it comes with lighter penalties. These are things that we can discuss with the prosecutor if one hires an attorney quickly enough.
Bail is a right that most accused can take advantage of since the accused is not guilty until the renders a verdict. Thus, the accused does not need to remain in a jail cell pending verdict. However, a judge has discretion on whether or not to set bail and where to set it.
Having an attorney negotiate for why bail should be set and trying to get it as low as possible is certainly wise.
For the best shot at being found innocent, it is necessary to hire a criminal defense attorney who can begin to gather evidence and build a strong case. We need to identify witnesses, interview witnesses, gather evidence to confirm an alibi and identify any other potentially guilty parties. Ideally, an attorney will be able to create enough reasonable doubt so that a jury does not convict.
Remember that a jury does not have to be convinced of a person’s innocence. They only have to have reasonable doubt that they did not commit the crime. An attorney does not need to prove innocence, only needs to create doubt. Still, it takes some time to gather the documents, evidence, and information necessary to have a chance of doing so. Hiring an attorney right away is wise because it provides that opportunity.
Being charged with a crime is a serious and alarming event. It is not wise to try to represent oneself in the situation, but instead, it is necessary to hire an experienced lawyer from the very beginning who can work to try and gather enough evidence to convince a jury not to convict. For help with a case, call our office right away.
Note: This is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice