When you are accused of a criminal offense in Los Angeles or nearby counties of Orange, Riverside, Ventura, or San Bernardino, it’s important you take certain steps to ensure you’re doing all possible to obtain positive results. Here are a few steps our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys recommend you take:
- Act immediately to secure legal representation. Do not put it off, as hiring the right lawyer is possibly the most important step you will take in protecting your legal rights, career, and freedom. Consider such factors as the attorney’s level of experience, focus of his/her legal practice, and whether the attorney seems to be solidly in agreement with your goals.
- Refrain from speaking with law enforcement or making statements. It’s human nature to want to defend yourself, however it’s important you don’t when it comes to law enforcement. Do not speak with the California Highway Patrol, Los Angeles Police Department, loss prevention officers – anyone – without first speaking to your lawyer. It is best to let your attorney speak for you, as he/she knows how to speak without putting your future and freedom at further risk by making statements which you may not realize yourself are incriminating.
- Expect (and plan for) legal expenses. Not only will you face attorney fees, it’s possible you will also need money to post bond or bail if a family member is incarcerated. However, you should be aware that posting bail may work to the defendant’s disadvantage, so speak with your lawyer to make the best decision in your particular situation. Additionally, keep in mind there may be court costs, and restitution in some cases if convicted.
- Consider resolving the case takes time, effort, and patience. Naturally you want immediate solutions when you are stressed out and involved in a criminal case; however, it’s essential you work with an experienced and capable lawyer who, after thoroughly reviewing your case, will determine the most effective legal strategies and apprise you of all of the options.
- You may also want to consider the importance of being employed or enrolled in school, as individuals who appear to be working to better their circumstances and future are often treated in a more favorable manner by prosecutors and judges.
Being arrested or charged with a crime does not mean you have reached a dead end, or that you have no choice but to accept the punishment. Until proven guilty, you are innocent. A compassionate Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer will work with you, providing legal guidance and support every step of the way so that positive results can be reached.