I’ve been contacted by a detective, what should I do?
If you have been contacted by a detective or investigator regarding alleged criminal activity, contact an experienced Criminal Defense Attorney right away to help with your case. At Seyb Law Group, we may be able to prevent your arrest or even the filing of criminal charges against you. Call right away to protect your rights.
If I’ve been accused of a crime, what’s going to happen to me?
If you have been accused of criminal activity, there are several different things that may happen. If you have not already been arrested, you may be required to surrender yourself into custody so you may be booked into jail for the crime you have been accused of. If no arrest or surrender is required, the District Attorney will file charges against you that you will have to answer to in Court. Sometimes however, a warrant may be issued for your arrest and the police may then take you into custody if you are picked up on that warrant. But whatever the circumstances of your case may be, Seyb Law Group will be there to help and will work hard to see you remain free awaiting the outcome of your case.
The Court Process
What is an Arraignment? And should I appear without an attorney?
An arraignment is the very first court appearance you make. It will be the date listed on the bottom of your citation or Notice to Appear given to you by an officer. The arraignment is very important because it will advise you of the charges that have been brought against you. At the arraignment, you will either plea guilty or not guilty and the court may set or adjust bail. Because this step is so important, it would be in your best interest to hire an Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney prior to the arraignment. You do not want to unwillingly give up important rights or compromise your case, so call Seyb Law Group today.
What happens after the Arraignment?
The Pre-Trial Conference
The Pre-Trial Conference or hearing is often set several days or weeks after an arraignment. At this step, the criminal defense attorney will be provided with arrest reports and other evidence pertaining to your arrest. The purpose of the Pre-Trial Conference is to attempt to resolve the court case prior to trial and negotiate a plea bargain agreement. There may be one or several Pre-Trial Conferences and most cases will be resolved at this step.
An attorney may file a motion in your case in an attempt to resolve the case or certain issues. A motion takes a certain position, backed by the law and legal precedent, and is filed with the court and a copy is given to the prosecutor. A hearing may be held to hear the motion where each side will have a chance to argue their position.
In felony cases, if the attorneys are unable or are unwilling to resolve the case in the Pre-Trial stage, the attorney may set a date for a Preliminary Hearing. At the preliminary hearing, witnesses will be called to testify, and the defense attorney and prosecutor will have a chance to question the witnesses. A judge will hear all the evidence and decide if there is enough to hold you accountable for the charges at a jury trial.
What should I expect during a jury trial?
Most cases do not progress to a jury trial; most are resolved during the Pre-Trial stage. However, if a resolution is not reached during the Pre-Trial stage, or you are not happy with the results of the negotiations and there are sufficient facts and evidence to try the case, you and your attorney can request a jury trial. The trial will take place in a courtroom in front of the jurors and a judge. The prosecution will present their case against you, then the defense attorney will present all of the evidence in your favor. If your case is set for a jury trial, hiring an Orange County Defense Attorney will be the most beneficial to your case. At Seyb Law Group, we will work tirelessly to present the most beneficial case on your behalf during a jury trial.
How long will my criminal case last?
The length of a criminal case depends on whether it is a misdemeanor or felony and the seriousness of the criminal charges filed against you. The District Attorney has up to one year to file charges against you, and the longer they delay, the longer the court process will be delayed. Most cases may take approximately 90 days to resolve if no jury trial is involved. If the case goes to a jury trial, the case will take longer because Seyb Law Group wants to be prepared as possible to competently defend you.
Will I have to go to Jail or Prison?
Whether you will be sentenced to jail or prison or not depends on the offense you are charged with and the circumstances surrounding your arrest. The possibility of jail or prison may be more likely if you have multiple past convictions on your record. To better your chances of staying out of jail or prison, or getting a lighter sentence, you should consider hiring an experienced attorney. Seyb Law Group will fight to provide you with the best possible outcome and try to avoid jail or prison at all costs. Call today to protect your liberty and rights.
What happens if I have injured someone?
If you have been charged with a crime that involved injuring another person, you can be charged with an enhancement to the base charge. An enhancement of a charge ultimately makes the punishment worse. An enhancement can apply in either misdemeanor or a felony cases. The seriousness of the case often depends on the extent of the injuries involved. Because your liberty may be at stake, don’t hesitate to contact Seyb Law Group today to protect your rights.
What if I have prior convictions for the same thing I’m charged with in my recent arrest?
If you have a prior conviction for the same or similar offenses, this can increase the potential punishments you face on the new charge. These punishments can increase with each successive conviction.
Do I have to appear in court?
In most misdemeanor cases, you may not have to appear in court at all. Seyb Law Group can competently represent you without you ever stepping foot in a court house. However, there are some important exceptions to this rule. For example, if you have been charged with domestic violence, even if it is a misdemeanor, you must appear in court. If your case is a felony, you must appear at every court hearing.
Does it make me look bad if I don’t appear in court for my misdemeanor case?
No, it does not affect your credibility if you do not appear in court for any arraignment or Pre-Trial hearings. This is because your credibility is not evaluated during these stages. However, if a jury trial is carried out in your case, your presence will be important.
Is it possible to win my case outright and have all my charges dismissed?
Yes, it is possible to win the case and have all charges against you dismissed, avoiding any fines or jail time. However, more often than not, the charges are just reduced to a lesser offense. By getting the case dismissed or getting the charges against you reduced, Seyb Law Group is potentially able to prevent a conviction from ever appearing on your record. With a lesser charge, fines can be greatly reduced, jail or prison time can be reduced or avoided altogether, probation periods can be shortened, and any court ordered programs will be lessened. The conviction will have much less of an impact on your life. Because you want the ultimate result with your criminal case, call Seyb Law Group today to ensure you get the best possible outcome.