I or a loved one was just arrested
I or a loved one was just arrested. What should I do?
Obtain a Copy of the Criminal Complaint
Find out what charge is being brought against you, and get a copy of the criminal complaint. You can get this from the court file at the clerk’s office since these are public documents. This will give you a brief summary of the charges against you and who the witnesses are.
Determine the Nature of the Charge
Ask if the charge is for a misdemeanor or a felony. A felony will require you to be held in police custody until you appear in court, while a misdemeanor usually allows for immediate bond. Also, find out when your next court date is and, if possible, which judge will be presiding over your case.
Seek legal help immediately, taking care to find an attorney who is experienced in criminal law.
Do not speak to anyone except your attorney, as everything you say can and will be used against you. This includes cellmates, lovers, friends, parents, siblings, and neighbors. By talking with anyone besides your lawyer, you risk turning them into potential witnesses, which will complicate the case