An arrest occurs when an officer takes you into custody for suspicion of any action that is illegal under the state or federal law. When arrested for a criminal accusation many people are unaware of what they will be in for. The process can be nerve wracking and stressful for those that face it and are uncertain of what the process involves. Depending on the specific circumstances of a case, the arrest process can vary in a number of ways. Under the constitution you have certain rights that are legally protected even in the event of an arrest. The arresting officer is required to read you your rights before further questioning take place.
One of the first rights that is useful to exercise is the right to remain silent. What someone says can often be used against them in the courtroom. An arrest can be an intense process that causes those under suspect to not be as cautious with what they say as they might normally be. Waiting for an attorney to be present before speaking is often a wise decision. Those that are unable to afford an attorney will be appointed one by the court. After you have been taken into custody you may be allowed to make a phone call and sometimes this is only allowed after the booking. Your personal possessions will be taken and held by the police and you will be required to sign the inventory after checking the items. You will need to be booked, during which basic information about you is given and your picture and finger prints are taken. The information of your arrest will be given to prosecutor’s office that will determine what the charges are.
Another right that citizens have is the right to a speedy trial. How long this takes is dependent on the location of the court but it is typically within two to three days. After your charges have been decided upon you will have an arraignment in which the judge states the charges against you and you either plead guilty or not guilty. You may be allowed to post bail if you are put in jail and the decision if typically left up to a judge to decide, however, under the constitution the bail amount cannot be excessive and must fit the crime. Bail is a fee that you pay to the court as a promise that you will return to the court on the day of your trial. If you fail to show on the actual day of your trial then the bail amount will be kept by the court. When you are arrested you have the right to dispute your charges and with the help of an attorney you can fight to protect your rights.
Criminal Defense Attorney