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Top Houston Criminal Defense Lawyer

Being arrested for a criminal offense in Houston, Texas is a quite scary moment in your life. The federal government has the ability to take away your liberty for the remainder of your lifetime. A quite intricate process begins to operate the moment that you are arrested by the authorities. It truly is daunting and overwelming.

However, these are generalities only. The actual answer is dependent on the sort of criminal activity you had been arrested for, the circumstances surrounding it, the county you are in, etc. Only those who understand the criminal law process, and realize how to make it work, will be able to genuinely let you know what to anticipate in your particular case. This is definitely an area of the law you do not ever want to handle without any help.

Experienced Criminal Attorney Austin Texas

An experienced criminal defense attorney will usually provide a complimentary consultation to any individual arrested for a criminal offense. It is best to take advantage of that free of charge consultation right now. Having an experienced criminal defense lawyer is essential to skillfully getting through the criminal process. Receive a complimentary preliminary consultation by calling the Best Lawyers In Austin today, around the clock, 365 days a year.

Listed here are the steps you may expect to take place, and what every step within the process means to you:

Stop and Arrest

The entire process starts with a stop or a charge by law enforcement. A stop isn’t really as formal as a charge. A law enforcement officer will stop you to make inquiries. They cannot stop you unless they have a reasonable belief that you violated what the law states. What is defined as a valid “reasonable suspicion” There are a million court cases answering that question and Lawyers In Austin are going to be capable of giving you a great many examples during your no charge consultation.

Nevertheless, understand that an individual always has the right to remain silent, even if you are simply stopped and questioned. You do not have to respond to questions from police officers at any time. In reality, everyone ought to realize their constitutional rights relating to criminal law.

If you are in an automobile, the law enforcement officer may possibly ask to search it. The authorities cannot search your automobile unless they have “probable cause”, or if you consent. They can seek your consent mainly because they do not quite have “probable cause.” You do not have to provide your consent to a search of your automobile. They can search your vehicle later, however your attorney will be able to then challenge the probable cause law enforcement asserted as being a reason to search the vehicle. Should you give your consent, the authorities do not need any other reason to search your vehicle, and your attorney will have considerably less to challenge in the courtroom.

“Probable cause” is more serious than “reasonable suspicion”, nevertheless there are a million court cases explaining it too and the Austin Criminal Defense Lawyers will give an explanation of those during your consultation. You cannot challenge a law enforcement officer’s assertion of probable cause until later on, in the courtroom. Once again, let your attorney deal with that question later.

Frequently, a law enforcement officer is able to charge you should they have probable cause to believe you committed a criminal offense, or if there is a warrant out for your arrest. If the stop and search bring about an arrest, you ought to in no way resist it. If it isn’t valid, you may wish to do so, nevertheless you cannot legally challenge it until later. Resisting arrest can be a criminal offense on its own. The optimal advice in the event you are arrested is to always be calm, always be silent, and demand an attorney before they ask you any sort of questions.


After being arrested, the police officer will “book” you. This is the process where they take your fingerprints, get your mug shot, do a background check, and ask you questions. Remember, you have the right to remain silent and the right to demand a lawyer. You do definitely not need to respond to questions. They aren’t going to let you out of jail even should you respond to virtually all their questions. Just always be calm, always be silent, and let your attorney deal with things later. That is certainly the very best you might do.


The charge originates from the prosecutor, definitely not law enforcement. The victim doesn’t get to charge you, and contrary to popular belief, they don’t get to drop the criminal charges either. The prosecutor will quite often take into consideration the wishes of the victim, however they do not have to. You are within the hands of the state subsequent to being arrested. They can’t hold you forever, however. You must be arrested for a criminal offense within a specific limited amount of time or they have got to release you.


This is where the Judge or Magistrate will formally read your criminal charges and let you know your legal rights. You should have asserted your priviledge to an attorney before now. If not, do so now. In the event you are asked how to plea, and you do not have an experienced Houston criminal defense attorney, you ought to say “not guilty.”

The Magistrate will decide whether or not you ought to be released, and if so, how much your bail will be. Bail is the amount of cash you, or another person else, should post with the court so they can be sure you will reappear. In the event you do not, your bond will undoubtedly be forfeited, and the county retains it.

If bail is set, another person should post it for you or hire a bail bondsman to do this. In the event you hire a bail bondsman, and you run off, the bondsman loses the bail money to the court. In the event that occurs, they send another person after you – a bounty hunter. Furthermore, there will undoubtedly be a warrant out for your arrest. In some cases you might be released on your own “recognizance”, which simply means there’s no bail. Nevertheless you are currently in the system and definitely will be required to appear for additional proceedings.


Discovery is known as a pre-trial process where the prosecutor needs to give certain information and facts to your Austin Criminal Lawyer. Your Austin Criminal Lawyers get to see all of the evidence against you prior to trial. There won’t be any secret, last minute witnesses permitted.

Pre-Trial Motions

This is the optimum reason to remain silent, not provide your consent to a search, and demand a criminal defense attorney in the event you are arrested. Your Austin Attorneys may prepare any number of pre-trial motions. They typically ask the Court to exclude certain evidence from trial if it was acquired in an unlawful or impermissible fashion. It is challenging to suppress evidence if you spoke voluntarily or had given consent to a search.

Plea Bargaining

This is known as a fancy word for negotiations. If the two sides reach an agreement, you will frequently need to plead guilty to one or more of the criminal charges to obtain the deal that has been reached. This involves going to court, responding to several questions from the Judge, and indicating to the court on the record that you are guilty to the charge agreed upon by your Lawyers Austin and the prosecutor.


If the prosecutor and your Austin Attorneys are unable to arrive at an agreement on a plea bargain, you will in most cases go to trial. Trial is where the government has to put on evidence that you committed a transgression, ordinarily including producing witnesses live in the courtroom to testify. You do not need to testify. You do not need to put on any sort of evidence whatsoever. The government needs to demonstrate its case, and it needs to establish it beyond a reasonable doubt.


If you are found guilty, or in the event you enter a plea of guilty primarily based on a plea bargain, you will probably be sentenced by the Court. The Judge will determine the suitable punishment. This may end up being anything from probation to active prison time. There are guidelines that apply and allow the Judge a general range of punishment choices.

Knowledgeable Austin Criminal Attorneys will be able to do a lot on your behalf at sentencing, this includes ensuring that all the procedures are followed, arguing for lesser guidelines, and arguing circumstances that would allow the Judge to sentence you to lower than that called for within the guidelines. Also, a criminal defense attorney may help you prior to sentencing by explaining to you what steps you might take to make the Judge more likely to be lenient on you. As an illustration, should you are arrested for drunk driving, and take a class or go to rehab, the Judge might take that into consideration when sentencing you.

Aggressive Austin Criminal Defense Attorneys

I have attempted to supply you with a useful overview of the criminal process, with a few recommendations on how best to deal with matters at every stage. Nevertheless I should repeat my earliest and most important advice here: call your Austin Criminal Lawyers whenever a criminal charge is made against you. It is no joke, and you could lose your protection under the law, your cash, and your independence.

Remember, expert Austin Attorneys offer you a absolutely free consultation for any individual arrested for a criminal offense. You should take advantage of that no cost time with an attorney to better understand the exact nature of your situation, and what is likely to take place at trial or sentencing.

§11 · April 9, 2012 · Journal · · [Print]

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