What You Do In The Interim Matters

After you have been charged with a crime, it may take 12-18 months before you go to trial. Although we will go over the process from your arrest to sentencing, understand that there is a significant amount of time between those two points. What you do in the interim matters. Your actions can have a direct impact on the outcome of your case. After hearing that, you should feel empowered. Why? Because we want to give you back some of the control you may feel you are losing. You may feel you are along for the ride during your case. Your attorney represents you, speaks on your behalf, and a judge or jury will render a verdict. This blog is about what is still in your circle of influence and how it can help you at sentencing—if it gets to that stage. 

The Process

The first step is getting arrested, where you will be taken into custody, and your rights will be read to you. After your arrest, you will be booked. Law enforcement officers record your personal information, take your fingerprints & photograph (also referred to as a “mugshot”). Then, you will have an initial appearance before a judge, and this is when you will be formally told what you are being charged with. If eligible, you can post bail. This largely depends on the severity of the crime and whether you are a flight risk. Even after you make bail, there are several other steps.

  • Preliminary hearing
  • Arraig
  • Discovery & pre-trial motions 
  • Plea bargaining 
  • Trial 
  • Sentencing
  • Appeals 

Use the Time You Have 

Realize that if you make bail, you can live at home, spend time with your family, and develop a defense with your criminal defense attorney. These are all invaluable. However, you have the potential to do more. If, for example, you have been involved in a severe car accident because you drove intoxicated, what steps are you taking to show that you are trying to improve yourself? 

Take action to demonstrate your remorse and commit to making a positive change. Words are weak, but actions communicate who you are and what you believe. Consider how you devote some of your time to rehabilitation efforts. Seek out therapy and counseling, attend support groups, enroll in educational programs, or get involved with an Alcoholics Anonymous group while getting sober. Consider what this says about your commitment to personal growth and rehabilitation. 

Sentencing Proposals

If you are found guilty or plead guilty, the court will proceed to sentencing. In past blogs, we discussed how your case is a collaborative process. Give your attorney the ability to make the best argument for you. The judge will consider various factors, including the nature of your offense, prior criminal history, and other circumstances connected to the case. The last point is the one you have the most control over. Use it. Get a GED, attend rehabilitation programs, get sober, and volunteer. Make the switch to reforming yourself and take steps to show your state of mind and level of commitment.  

Cate & Brough 
If you have been arrested and charged with a crime, contact our criminal defense attorneys as soon as possible. This is a long process, and our firm will assist and guide you through it. Protect yourself and your rights by scheduling your consultation with us.

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Cate & Brough, P.A.

At Cate & Brough, we all have personal experience with family law and family court. We know more than just what the law says about your issue – we know what you are going through.

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