What Happens After the Arrest?
If you've been arrested, you'll likely be questioned about the accused crime by law enforcement officials following detainment. One of the most important things to remember is to never answer any questions, no matter how minor, without first retaining skilled legal representation. Every question will be asked with a specific result in mind – gaining information that can be used against you in court. You do not have to answer any questions related to the charge until you've spoken with a lawyer. It is best for you to hire an experienced West Palm Beach criminal defense lawyer right away for experienced legal counsel, and determine the best possible approach for building a defense for your case.
The Booking Process
Once you are taken into custody, you will be booked during which personal information will be documented and you will be fingerprinted and photographed. Any personal items will be taken from you and stored during this time as well. Depending on the location you may be granted a phone call and since you will likely only have one it is important to contact someone that can help you. Information pertaining to your case will be reviewed by the prosecutor’s office and they will come up with what charges they believe are in order. After being placed in jail, everyone has the right to a speedy trial and this will mandate that a prosecutor decide on the charges typically within 72 hours. If the time between your arrest and being booked is not reasonable, an attorney can seek a writ of habeas corpus which is a court order that requires officers to take you before a court where a judge can determine if you are being held unlawfully.
Arraignment and Posting Bail
The arraignment period will come next and it is during this time that you stand before the court and are formally read the charges that have been made against you. You will have the chance to plead guilty, not guilty or no contest at this point. A bail amount can be set as long as there are not certain factors involved which could cause the court to choose to not allow bail. This can be the belief that a suspect may try to flee, that they are a danger to society or they are faced with more serious charges. If a bail amount is set, than by paying it you can be released from custody while your trial continues. Bail can be paid in a number of ways, including through the use of a bail bond for those that are unable to afford the high cost that comes along with one.
At my firm, The Law Offices of Phillip T. Ridolfo, Jr., I understand that this is a very stressful time for you if you've just been arrested. Your whole future could be at stake. With the help of an experienced advocate, you can start on a step by step approach to resolving your case. At my office I work with many different aspects of
criminal defense, including
identity theft and
misdemeanor crimes. You deserve to have
your rights protected and your freedom fought for by someone who cares to give personalized attention and support. Having an ally on your side who knows the legal system inside and out can make all the difference in the outcome of your case.