How to Handle Criminal Allegations
Having criminal allegations raised against you can be one of the most terrifying experiences. In many cases, an accident or ignorance can lead to criminal charges which will make anyone worried. The most important thing to remember when dealing with a criminal case, however, is to remain calm at all times, and never say anything without your lawyer present. In the United States, you are innocent until proven guilty, so it’s crucial to have faith in your innocence despite the charges against you.
Criminal defense attorneys know better than anyone else how to deal with criminal charges of all varieties, ranging from DUI/DWIs, to conspiracy charges, to possession with and without intent, and sex offenses. The number of criminal charges is enormous and can be specific to the state you reside in. In any case, an attorney is best equipped to handle your situation and secure justice for you or anyone else who is facing criminal charges. Although each case is different, it’s important to know how basic proceedings are performed for general cases.
For a DUI or DWI, it’s important to know that your license will be suspended if you are convicted. For a first time offense, the suspension can last up to a year. For second time offenders, the suspension can range between 6-10 years.
For drug possession crimes, there are two different types. Possession and possession with intent are treated differently. Possession is simply when one is charged with the possession of illegal substances, most often with the intent of using. Possession with intent involves conscious intent to distribute, sell, or manufacture illicit substances. Drug charges are usually dealt with at the state level, unless you were arrested by a federal agent, or had more severe charges than simple possession.
For bail, most of the time it’s set the same day the arrest occurred, however, police can defer setting the bail amount to a judge, which extends the timeframe to approximately five days. Bail can be paid by cash, check or using property as collateral. Bail bonds can also be used, and are often only about 10% of the set bail. Bail is merely a tool used to make sure people appear in court. Once the person appears in court, bail is refunded back to them.
As noted previously, criminal charges and procedures can be scary, especially for those who try to live good, honest lives and wound up in the wrong place at the wrong time. The most important thing anyone can do under these circumstances is to remain calm and quiet and contact an attorney who can help protect you and your individual rights.