What happens next?
2 attorney answers
Mr, Aprile is correct and I would add that it would be very wise for you to engage an attorney as if you are convicted and this is on your record the ramifications are significant. It is your future which is at risk.
To the PROSPECTIVE client, please review my efforts to assist by quickly and frankly responding to your question with AVVO. Also, please realize this PRELIMINARY answer to your question(s) is for general purposes and based upon the information you have conveyed. As the response is based on very limited information it MUST NOT be relied upon as the basis for action or inaction. If you are seeking legal advice which you can and should rely upon you will have to engage an attorney, provide all of the facts in detail and answer their questions. My response does NOT establish an attorney-client relationship. That may only be established by mutual agreement, and the signing of a written retainer agreement, which will require payment for our services. Providing counsel and representation is what we do for a living and, just like you, we must get paid for our work.
You will receive a letter from the court where the offense took place. You will be required to attend your first hearing to be arraigned (enter a plea). If you plead guilty then the case is over and the judge can sentence you right away, but will probably make you meet with a probation officer and return on a separate court date. If you plead not guilty then the court will schedule a pretrial hearing for you or your attorney to negotiate with the prosecutor. I highly recommend you contact a criminal defense attorney to represent you in this matter. It is likely that a criminal defense attorney can help you obtain more favorable results then if you try to tackle this on your own. Very often, an agreement for a much lesser charge can be reached or if the evidence isn't strong then a dismissal of the complaint could even be possible.