ARIZONA CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
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Phoenix Criminal Defense Attorneys
Smart & Aggressive Lawyers
Being charged with any type of criminal offense in Arizona can have life altering consequences. Because our state has no expungement statute, any offense that you plead guilty to or are convicted of stays on your criminal history permanently. Having a criminal conviction does not end with the penalties imposed by the court, it can impact your ability to find employment, rent an apartment, or seek higher education. Whether you are facing misdemeanor or criminal charges, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney that will aggressively fight to protect your rights. At Bighorn Law of Arizona our criminal defense attorneys are committed to strongly defending our client’s presumption of innocence, and strive to achieve the best result every day, every time, in every case.
Our Criminal Defense Practice Areas
Drunk DRIVING/ DUI/ DWI
FRAUD/ THEFT CRIMES
HOMICIDE/ VIOLENT CRIMES
BURGLARY/ PROPERTY CRIMES
INTERNET/ COMPUTER CRIMES
MOTION TO SET ASIDE CONVICTION
Call us today at (602) 553-0000 to speak with one of our Phoenix Criminal Defense Lawyers
Frequently Asked Questions About Criminal Defense
When you are accused of any type of crime, your chances of successfully defending yourself against those charges usually depends on the skill of the criminal defense attorney you hire. Listed below are some of the most common questions we receive from prospective clients:
Should I Talk With The Police?
In almost every instance, it is in your best interests to not answer any questions or speak with the police when you are under investigation or being accused of a crime. Instead you should immediately request to speak with an attorney. Your attorney can talk to the police for you, relay any exculpitory evidence for you while protecting your legal rights.
What Evidence Do The Police Need to Arrest Me?
The police must have probable cause or reasonable suspicion that you have commited a crime to arrest you. When the police believe that cause exists, they may then place you into custody at that time. In some instances the police can also choose to submit charging information to the city or county attorneys office for their review of the information to make a charging decision.
What Does Being Arraigned Mean?
When you are charged with a crime your initial court appearance is called an arraignment. At that time you are advised of the charges against you, and the judge will set your release conditions. It is important to have an experienced attorney with you at your arraigment that can receive and review the police reports and argue for favorable release conditions for you.
What is a Preliminary Hearing?
When you are charged with a felony, your first court date after the initial appearance is usually a preliminary hearing. This hearing establishes whether probable cause exists that a crime has been committed, and if the case should move forward. In Arizona, many courts will set a status conference prior to a preliminary hearing to review the pending charges and schedule any potential witness testimony at the preliminary hearing.
What Follows the Preliminary Hearing?
If the court determines that there is sufficient evidence to establish that you have committed a crime, the case will move forward to the trial court and a pretrial conference will be scheduled. Prior to moving the case forward to the trial court, your attorney can also negotiate with the state’s attorney towards a plea agreement to resolve the charges.
What Happens at a Pretrial Conference?
A pretrial conference is designed for your attorney to meet with the prosecutor to discuss a plea agreement, or in instances when no agreement can be reached, prepare for trial by arguing pretrial motions to the court, such as motions to suppress or exclude evidence. In cases that your attorney believes there is a lack of evidence, they can file a motion to dismiss the case. In cases where no plea agreement is reached, the case is then set for trial.
What Happens at a Trial?
When no plea agreement is reached in a case, a trial date is set. In some misdemeanor cases no jury will be selected, and the case will be presented to the judge. In felony cases, a jury is selected, and the trial begins. Each party then makes an opening statement, and the state will present its evidence, including witness testimony, at which time your defense attorney can cross examination the witnesses. When the prosecution is done presenting their case, your defense attorney is then able to present evidence on your behalf. After the defense completes their portion of the case, each side gives a closing statement, and the case is then given to the jury to deliberate and return a verdict.
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