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I’ve Been Arrested. What Do I Do Now?

I’ve Been Arrested. What Do I Do Now?

If you are arrested for a crime, there are steps you should take to protect your rights under the law. Most crimes will be classified as either felonies (more serious crimes with more severe potential consequences) or misdemeanors (less serious crimes). Regardless of which type of crime you are charged with, you should follow this advice: Do not argue with, resist or assault the arresting officer. This will only make the situation worse and could result in additional charges. Even if you are acquitted of the original charge, you may still be convicted of resisting arrest – especially if your actions are caught on police video. The police, jail and court personnel are doing their jobs. Be polite and do not lash out at them. You should answer basic questions about your name and address, and provide the officer with your date of birth. Ask to speak with an attorney before answering any other questions. After your arrest, you will be taking before a Judge for an initial hearing. For a misdemeanor crime, you may be released with a promise to appear in court at a later date, or the Judge may order you to wear an electronic monitoring device. Alternatively, the Judge may set a secured or unsecured bond, requiring you to pay the amount ordered to secure your release. If you are arrested at night or on a weekend or holiday, you may spend a night or two in jail before you can see a Judge. Once you are released, follow any restrictions set by the Judge (for instance, your driving privileges may be limited or you...
5 Things Everyone Who is Arrested Must Know

5 Things Everyone Who is Arrested Must Know

Most of us will never be arrested. But if you are, there are some key things you should know: Be polite and courteous to the arresting officer, Magistrate, and jail personnel. Follow all instructions given by law enforcement officer and judicial officials. Tell the arresting officer you want an attorney before answering any questions other than biographical information (name, address, birth date, etc.). If arrested, you will be taken before a Magistrate, who will set a bond. The Magistrate will authorize your release upon execution of (a.) a written promise to appear; (b.) custody release; (c.) electronic house arrest; (d.) an unsecured bond; or (e.) a secured bond in some dollar amount. The Magistrate can also set restrictions or conditions you must follow upon your release from custody. For example, if you are arrested for an assault charge, the Magistrate can set a restriction that you not have any contact with the purported victim. It is important that you take advantage of your right to counsel. An experienced criminal defense attorney can ensure your rights are protected....