Being placed under arrest for any reason is a stressful and shocking event. Arrests can occur after a lengthy police investigation or may occur as a result of a brief observation from an individual officer. A criminal defendant may be notified by the investigating agency that criminal charges are being brought and that a warrant has been issued or the arrest may come as a complete surprise. Whatever the circumstance, if you have been arrested or are under investigation for a crime, you should immediately seek advice from an experienced Clearwater Criminal Defense Attorney. The early intervention of an attorney can sometimes have a significant effect on the outcome of your case.Arrests
Often, arrests are made based on an arrest warrant. An arrest warrant can be issued for a variety of reasons. If a police agency has conducted an investigation and determined that they have probable cause that a crime has been committed, they may issue an arrest warrant. If a defendant fails to appear for a scheduled court date, the court may issue a failure to appear warrant. The court may also issue violation of probation warrants if it is alleged that a probationer violated the terms of his or her probation in some way.
In certain situations, an arrest can be made without a warrant. Where an officer observes a misdemeanor offense occur in his or her presence, the officer can make an arrest. Officers often make arrests for misdemeanors like DUI, petit theft and battery. Officers sometimes have the discretion not to make a physical arrest and to issue a notice to appear to a person suspected of committing a misdemeanor. If an officer has enough information suggesting that a suspect has committed a felony, the officer can make a warrantless arrest whether the offense occurred in the officer’s presence or not.Custody
Once you have been arrested, the police may transport you to a number of locations. If you have been arrested for DUI, the police may take you the station or a designated Breath Alcohol Testing facility in order to collect additional evidence against you. If you have been arrested for a serious offense, police will often transport you to the station to question you. If you were injured prior to or during your arrest, police may also be required to transport you to the hospital for medical treatment. No matter your first stop, you will eventually be transported to the jail where you will begin the booking process. You may be able to post a bond, a Judge might release you on your own recognizance (“ROR”), or you may be held without bond pending a hearing.Miranda Rights
Many people arrested for the first time are surprised when officers do not immediately read them their “Miranda” rights; that an arrestee has the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. Television and movies often depict these rights being read as soon as a person is placed under arrest, but reality is quite different. Officers and investigators are only required to inform you of your Miranda rights when you have been taken into custody and they begin to interrogate you.
If an officer reads you your Miranda warnings, it is important that you immediately request a lawyer. Once you do so, the officers are required to stop talking to you and allow you to consult with an attorney. Officers are allowed to lie to you and give you false information in order to coerce you into making statements that can and will be used against you. You should never speak to a police officer or investigator without first consulting with an experienced defense attorney.Consult with and experienced Clearwater Defense Attorney
If you have been arrested or are under investigation in Clearwater or Pinellas County, you should contact us at Hanlon Law. We pride ourselves on our ability to intervene in your case at the early stages before or immediately following your arrest. Contact Hanlon Law today at 727.897.5413