Aggravated assault is a serious offense, and if you have been accused of it, there are three specific steps you should take immediately. Do not wait to weigh your options – the actions you take immediately after an arrest can significantly affect the outcome of your case. If you are facing aggravated assault charges, consult with an experienced Killeen criminal defense lawyer today.
Number 1: Invoke Your Right to Remain Silent
If you have ever watched a police procedural television show – and we all have – you know about the right to remain silent. If you are charged with aggravated assault, the most important thing to remember is that you do have this right and that you should invoke it immediately. Upon arrest, you are obligated only to provide the arresting officer with your full name – the rest can wait until your experienced criminal defense lawyer arrives and offers professional legal counsel. Do not admit to guilt in the matter or to associating with an at-fault party – instead, you should simply let the officers present know that you are invoking your right to remain silent.
Number 2: Remain on Your Best Behavior Post-Release
If you are charged with aggravated assault, you will attend a hearing after your arrest where you will be officially charged – or you will be released. If you are to be charged, those charges must be posted within 72 hours of your arrest, or you can no longer be detained. If you are charged, however, you will probably be allowed the opportunity to post bail.
Upon release, it is important to remain on your best behavior. Do not engage in illegal – or even suspicious – activity. To do so can seriously impair your case. If you have been charged with aggravated assault, it is in your best interest to mind your p’s and q’s for the duration.
Consult with an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney
In addition to having the right to remain silent, you also have the right to an attorney. Invoke this right from the outset. Taking a wait and see attitude is not in your best interest. While it is only natural to feel intimidated when in the custody of law enforcement, simply remind yourself that it is your constitutional right to request an attorney and do so immediately.
Your attorney will help you in a variety of important ways, including:
- Ensuring that any charges against you are either filed or dropped within the allotted 72 hours
- Negotiating a fair bail amount for your release
- Helping you determine your best defense strategy
- Negotiating a beneficial plea deal (if applicable)
- Building your strongest case (including collecting and presenting evidence in your defense)