No one wants to be arrested and charged with a crime. And certainly nobody wants to be charged with a crime and be forced to sit in jail awaiting their trial for that crime. The minute you are arrested, your life changes forever, whether you are formally charged with a crime or not. You will always be the person who was sitting in the back of that police car, the one in cuffs, the one waiting to speak to a criminal defense attorney.
During the booking process, try to remain as calm as possible. Try to listen to what is being said to you, and what is being asked. Remember though, that you do have the right to remain silent as was explained to you when you were read your Miranda rights. If you do make a statement, try to keep it brief. There is cooperating and then there is shooting yourself in the foot. When the chance comes, take the opportunity to call a criminal defense attorney and explain the situation as you best can. You should be given a hearing time as soon after arrest as possible, but you should be aware that there are certain crimes that will not allow for bonding. These include domestic violence (for which you will be held automatically for 24 hours and then given an advisory hearing), drunk driving or public intoxication (for which you will be held for a minimum of eight hours) and more serious crimes that do not allow for bond at all.
Once you are bonded out of jail, your criminal defense lawyer will get to work gathering the necessary files on your case, including reading through everything that the prosecution has against you as well. Everything your own criminal law attorney gathers will be sent to the prosecution, in an exchange that is known as ‘discovery.’ You will be given a list of rules to comply with while out on bond and reminded of how important it is for you to show up for all scheduled hearings.
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