An Overview of Criminal Law
Insight from Our Columbia Criminal Attorneys
When you are arrested or accused of a crime, you will likely interact with
the criminal justice system in some way. This can be a very intimidating
and overwhelming. It is important to always be informed of what your rights
are and the processes you should expect to encounter. The more prepared
you are, the smoother you will be able to navigate the system.
If you find yourself facing charges within criminal justice system, you
cannot afford to go through this time without proven
defense by your side. That is where Holder Susan Slusher, LLC comes in. Our firm
has years of experience and offers insightful counsel from our Columbia
criminal defense lawyers. We know that this time can be tough, which is
why we are here to help.
Let us right to protect your rights today!
Fill out a free case evaluation to get started.
What is due process?
No matter what type of crime you have been accused of, you have the right
to what is known as due process. This means that the rules of criminal
procedure must be followed correctly in your case and your constitutional
protections must be honored.
- Certain rights covered under due process of the law include:
- The right to reasonable notice of proceedings against you
- The right to a fair hearing when a person faces penalties
- The right to contest and present a defense against accusations
- The right to have a lawyer during the trial if desired
- The right to appeal any verdict or ruling against you
Essentially, due process provides a vehicle for you to enact your rights
found in the Constitution.
Preparing for Your Criminal Case
There are many stages involved in the criminal process leading up to the
final trial and sentencing.
- You will likely go through the following:
Investigation: Before you are even arrested, the police may be searching for any evidence,
facts, witness testimony, and other supporting matters to try to build
a case. If they have uncovered evidence that incriminates you, they may
request a warrant for arrest.
Arrest and bail: You may be arrested for a crime due to police obtaining evidence against
you or witnessing a particular infraction. From there, a judge will determine
whether or not to set bail, which means you would pay a specified amount
to get released. If you fail to show up for a court date, you forfeit
the bail and an arrest warrant may be issued.
Arraignment: During this time, you will appear before a judge and be informed of what
charges are being levied against you. You will also be allowed to request
a court-appointed or private lawyer. The judge will then ask you to enter
a plea, such as not guilty or guilty.
Preliminary hearing: When you are accused of a felony, there will be a preliminary hearing
in which the prosecution will be tasked with convincing the jury that
there should be a trial due to overwhelming supporting evidence.
Plea bargaining: In many cases, a plea bargain may be the best possible option for a defendant.
Their defense lawyer can negotiate with the prosecution for lesser charges
and penalties so long as they enter a guilty plea.
Trial and sentencing: If a case makes it all the way to trial, both the prosecution and the
defense will have the chance to present their opening statement, supported
by evidence, witnesses, facts, and then finish up with a closing statement.
If a defendant is found to be guilty of their charges, the judge or jury
will determine what the appropriate sentencing and penalties area. These
may include jail time, fees, restitution, and community service.
Have more questions? Call our firm today!
The criminal process and justice system is complex. If you are facing charges
and aren’t sure what your rights are during this time or want to
make sure you take the next best step, be sure to call on a knowledgeable
Columbia criminal attorney from our firm.
Holder Susan Slusher, LLC
is here to provide the reliable and air-tight defense you need.
Contact us today to discuss your charges.