This guide is a helpful tool for those individuals who find themselves facing criminal charges.
Talk to a lawyer as soon as possible
Most people do not fully understand what their charges mean and the potential consequences they may be facing, so it is important to speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. The attorney you hire may make all the difference with the outcome of your case, whether you end up with a record, how much you pay in fines, and possibly whether you go to jail or for how long.
Don't contact the police about your case
Once you have received charges, do not contact the police about your case until you have contacted and retained an attorney to advise you how to proceed. Remember, anything you say can and will be used against you.
Draft a summary of the events that lead to the charges
While the events are as fresh as possible, draft a summary of all of your interactions with the police and of the incident as best as you can remember. This includes conversations, potential witnesses, any documents, etc. Save any important emails, photos, text messages and/or other social media. All of these things may be important to your defenses and helpful for your attorney.
Don't contact any potential victims in the case
If your charges have an alleged victim, do NOT attempt to speak to her or him in any way - that includes through social media, text message, email, etc.
Stay calm and be smart
Although these are sometimes extremely emotional situations, you will be better able to help yourself and your attorney if you are able to communicate in a calm manner, and also you do not want to add more to an already bad situation by making other poor choices.
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