If you are ever involved in a criminal case in which you are the focus of an investigation, it is important to properly defend yourself. If you know you are innocent and the police just want to ask you a few questions, than not having a lawyer does look good for you, as it shows you have nothing to hide. However, if the prosecutors are turning up the case and are now looking in on you more severely, it is time to bring in a criminal lawyer. There are a few specific points in which you need to look for when coming to the determination that you need a criminal lawyer. There is no problem with hiring a lawyer right off the bat, but if you are inclined to wait, there are a few different times that determine when you need to hire a criminal lawyer.
The first issue you need to consider is what sort of a case it is. If you were just pulled over on the side of the road for speeding, you probably do not have time to hire a criminal lawyer, and there really is no need for one. However, if you are brought in for questioning concerning a case, you should contact a lawyer if you believe that you are the subject of an investigation. This way, you can at least prepare yourself for the possibility of an arrest.
If you are arrested, which is the next step in a criminal case, you need to bring in a lawyer. Being arrested does not mean you are being charged yet. In fact, the police officer can arrest you under probable cause, which does not mean you have actually committed a crime. It is important to have a lawyer on hand now, because after you are arrested you must head off to an arraignment. This is where the prosecutor presents the formal charges in open court. You want an attorney for this because you want to know what to pled and how to go about it. Even if you did commit the crime, you want to at least plead not guilty, as this gives your lawyer the chance to reduce the charges.
About The Author
Steve Raiser, is a founding partner at long island criminal lawyers who specializes in providing high quality criminal defense to those who need it.