What to Do After an Arrest in Los Angeles

After an Arrest in Los Angeles

Being arrested can be intimidating, and you may scramble to figure out what to do. Don’t lose focus on what’s essential: protecting yourself from self-incrimination and keeping your rights intact. Stay calm, exercise your rights, and consider your options. Then call a Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer from The Law Offices of Justin E. Sterling.

What to Do After an Arrest

Los Angeles arrest procedures typically follow the same process. You’ll be taken into custody and transported to a local jail for booking. During this time, keep your mind focused on:

  • Knowing your rights – You have the constitutional right to remain silent, even if law enforcement says they only want to ask a few simple questions. Police officers use various strategies and tactics to ask questions, and they’ll use your answers against you. Do not talk to law enforcement without a criminal defense attorney present.
  • Avoiding “helping” – You might feel bad about refusing to talk with law enforcement and think you can speed up the process by providing basic information to help your case. Unfortunately, this strategy often traps clients, making it even more challenging to deal with potential charges. If you say something while trying to be helpful that can be interpreted as a confession or undermines your credibility, your lawyer may have trouble untangling the matter later.
  • Calling a defense attorney – You should seek legal counsel after an arrest to protect your rights and increase the possibility of a favorable outcome. Law enforcement is not on your side, but your attorney will be there to protect your rights after an arrest in Los Angeles.

Understanding the Charges

Essential Steps After an Arrest in Los Angeles for Criminal CasesAfter an arrest in LA, you’ll face felony or misdemeanor charges.

  • Misdemeanors – Misdemeanors are lesser charges, but they still might involve jail time and fines. These convictions can follow you around for years afterward.
  • Felonies – Felonies are more severe charges. They typically carry lengthier prison sentences and heftier fines than misdemeanors.

You’ll learn the specific charges you’re facing at your arraignment. You’ll also enter a plea and potentially post bail.

Bail and Release Process

At your arraignment, the judge will ask for basic information about you and your history to determine whether you’ll remain in custody while awaiting trial as part of the Los Angeles bail process. Determining bail eligibility depends on:

  • Your charges
  • Your criminal history
  • Your relationship with the area
  • The potential risks of releasing you

Preparing Your Case

If you’ve been charged with a crime, you need an attorney to build a solid case to defend you against the charges. Building a strong case relies on several critical elements, such as:

  • Evidence collection – Critical evidence may include documents like time cards, security camera footage, financial transactions, or cell phone records.
  • Witnesses – Consider potential witnesses you could contact for affidavits or potential testimony at trial. Your attorney can interview these witnesses and assess their helpfulness to your case.

Court Appearances

Your lawyer will inform you of required court appearances and prepare you for the potential outcome of your case. They can explain:

  • What to expect – Your attorney will provide an overview of the proceedings and how they could affect you and your case.
  • Dress and conduct – Your lawyer will recommend dressing nicely and showing respect to the court officers to make a positive impression.

Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney in Los Angeles

Justin SterlingDon’t risk trying to handle criminal charges on your own. Even a misdemeanor can negatively impact your life. Call the Law Office of Justin E. Sterling for a free consultation. We can work to prevent criminal charges from risking your freedom and reputation.