Being charged with a crime means facing an overwhelming and complex legal system with which many people have online limited experience. According to Anggelis & Gordon, PLLC, compassionate criminal defense lawyers serving clients throughout the Lexington, KY, area, criminal law cases begin with an arrest, and can end with a plea bargain or a trial, depending on the severity of the crime.
In order to remove as much confusion as possible, Anggelis & Gordon would like to offer the following information:
- Bail: For minor offenses, bail may be set immediately after booking without any time spent in custody, or you may just be issued a citation. Alternatively, you may have to wait for a bail review hearing to establish the availability of bail.
- Arraignment: If your crime is severe enough to warrant time in custody, your first appearance in court will be at an arraignment hearing, where the charges are read and you plead “not guilty,” “guilty,” or “no contest.” This is also when the dates for future proceedings are set.
- Grand Jury or Preliminary Hearing: Before the case can go to trial, the state has to find probable cause either with a preliminary hearing or a grand jury. If no probable cause is found, then the case doesn't go to trial.
- Trial: If a plea bargain isn't reached, and after last-minute issues are resolved with pre-trial motions, the case moves to trial, where the prosecution attempts to prove the defendant's guilt, and the defense tries to prove the defendant’s innocence. After listening to the evidence, witness accounts, and statements from the attorneys, the judge or jury makes a final determination on guilt or innocence.
For the best results navigating this complex process, always seek the help of an experienced criminal attorney. Visit Anggelis & Gordon, PLLC online to learn more, or call (859) 255-7761 to schedule a consultation today.