If you have been charged with a crime in Texas, the next steps you take can have a profound effect on the course of your case. The first order of business after being charged with a crime is obtaining an experienced criminal defense attorney, but the answers to the following FAQ can also help you move forward with more ease and assurance.
When Is It in My Best Interest to Speak with the Police?
Many people are under the mistaken belief that speaking with the police after being charged with a crime is likely to clear the matter up. This idea is likely something that people see on TV, but that rarely plays out in real life. The answer to when is it in your best interest to speak with the police is never – unless you have a dedicated criminal defense attorney by your side.
For more information on speaking with the police, read Wait before Speaking with the Police
What Is My Arraignment?
Arraignment is not the kind of work that calms a person’s nerves, but it is not as terrifying as it might sound. Your arraignment simply refers to your first appearance in court regarding the charge you face – regardless of whether you were ever arrested or taken into custody. At your arraignment, the charge against you will be formally presented to you, and you will be required to plead in one of the following ways:
Not guilty (generally the best choice unless you have made a beneficial plea bargain with the prosecution)
Read more about Criminal Charges and Courtroom Etiquette
How Does Bail Work?
Bail refers to the amount of money that is specified by the court in exchange for your conditional release from jail. The idea behind bail is to provide you with the temporary freedom necessary to face the charges brought against you with intention while financially incentivizing your return to court for trial. Because many defendants cannot afford to pay their bail, they often work with bail bondsmen to whom they must pay a percentage of their total bail. Experienced criminal defense attorneys are often adept at successfully negotiating considerably lower bail amounts.
What Is My Preliminary Hearing?
If you have been charged with a felony, your preliminary hearing will be one of the first steps in the process, and it is here that the judge will carefully evaluate the charges brought against you to determine if there is enough probable cause to continue pursuing your case.
Seek the Professional Legal Counsel of an Experienced Killeen Criminal Defense Lawyer
If you’ve been charged with a crime in the State of Texas, you need a savvy criminal defense lawyer in your corner, and Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen, Texas, fits the bill. Mr. Pritchard understands the serious nature of your situation and is committed to providing you with the legal counsel you need to obtain your case’s most favorable resolution. For more information about how we can help you, please do not wait to contact us online or call us at 254-501-4040 today.