Committing a crime and facing a felony charge is many people’s worst nightmare and can be completely life-changing. Whether or not you meant to commit the crime, once you’re arrested and facing jail time, fines, or both, you need a dedicated and experienced lawyer to represent you and give excellent legal advice. If you’re in the state of New Jersey or New York, you need to call The Law Offices of David I. Goldstein immediately. We’re proud to be a criminal defense law firm that will always do their best to get a favorable outcome for our clients. We answer our phones 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so don’t hesitate to call now.
You’ve probably heard, “You have the right to remain silent,” on your favorite crime TV show, but when you’re facing a felony charge, it’s one of the best choices you can make. Anything you say can and will be used against you, and you can’t take back something that accidentally slipped out or you said without thinking. The Fifth Amendment gives you the right to refuse to speak or incriminate yourself in a criminal case. If you’re being questioned in custody, you can refuse to speak until your lawyer is present or you’ve had a chance to speak with him or her.
Be Calm and Polite
It can be difficult to do, especially if you’re flustered, scared, or worried about what is going to happen next. Resisting arrest or responding to law enforcement officers or other authority figures in a rude or sassy manner will only reflect poorly on you and could make you appear guilty. Keep your voice calm and your body language relaxed, even if your heart is pounding.
Call Your Lawyer ASAP
As soon as you can, contact a criminal defense lawyer. Waiting to call will only negatively affect your case, so as soon as you’re given a phone call, contact a trusted lawyer who can come to meet you as soon as he or she is able to get to the police station. Remember that a police officer or prosecutor who is interviewing you does not have your best interests at heart, so it’s essential to have a lawyer present to keep you protected from making a mistake.
Know What You’re Being Charged With
Most people don’t understand the difference between a felony and a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor is a lesser charge and could carry jail time, a fine, or probation. A felony is more serious and could land you in a federal prison and cost you major bucks. If you’re convicted of a felony, you’ll also lose many rights and privileges that may affect you forever, even after you’ve been released from prison.
Don’t Post Bail Until You’ve Spoken with a Lawyer
If a loved one has been arrested and you’re able to post bail and get him or her out of jail, you probably will show up to the police station as soon as you can. While it may be difficult to wait, talk with an attorney before posting bail. Some of the reasons include:
- Your criminal defense attorney will be able to review the case and the charges and determine if the charges are unfounded, could be lowered, or if your loved one could even be released without having to pay bail.
- Your lawyer will also be able to determine if the charges will be dropped at the arraignment hearing. If this is the case, then your loved one will be released from jail within two to three days and not have to pay bail.
- Posting bail is a complicated process, and if you pay the fee, the judge could raise bail when your loved one appears at his or her arraignment. If this is true, then he or she would be returned to custody. You won’t be refunded for the bond that you paid previously.
Posting bail and getting out of jail as soon as you or your loved one can is not always the most advantageous idea. Contact your criminal defense attorney as soon as you can and make sure that you discuss the options for posting bail before you decide to pay up or forgo the fee.
It can be embarrassing to commit a crime, but it’s always in your best interest to be completely honest with your attorney. What is shared between you and your lawyer is confidential, so give the most accurate information possible. Being honest will only benefit your case so that your lawyer can represent you in the best way possible.
Don’t Talk to Anyone
It can be second nature to talk to your spouse, loved one, or friend about the arrest and what happened. While you may be itching to talk, keep your mouth shut. You can’t be assured of confidentiality, and even if you trust your family and friends completely, anything that you tell them can be used against you. If a family member or friend is going to be interviewed or will be asked to take the stand during your trial, the less that he or she knows, the less that you can be indicted. Wait until the case is completely finished before you talk with anyone.
Write Down Everything
Before you forget anything, write down everything that you can remember. The longer that time passes by, you can be confused and forget important details. While the experience is still fresh on your mind, take a few minutes to jot down your side.
Make a List of Witnesses
If anyone was at the scene of the crime, do your best to write down their names if you can, or even a description. You should also include anyone who can testify to your good behavior and character, such as your boss, a close friend who has known you for years, a coworker, a business partner, etc.
Don’t miss any court appearances. If you’re not able to make it due to illness or injury, make sure you contact your criminal defense attorney as soon as you can. Keep a schedule of all of your court dates and make it a point to appear at all of them.
Hire a Trusted Lawyer
The Law Offices of David I. Goldstein will answer your call and do our absolute best to represent you in court and offer excellent legal advice. Our understanding lawyers won’t judge you and will treat you with respect. Whatever time of day or night, we’re here for you. If you’re facing a felony charge in New York or New Jersey, contact our law offices now. We look forward to your call!