Criminal Lawyer in Camden County, NJ
Being convicted of a crime can be detrimental to a person’s life and livelihood. If you are convicted of a crime, it may become more difficult to find jobs, maintain relationships, impact your family, career, finances, lead to jail time, and more.
Those facing criminal charges are often uncertain of how to move forward. Rebel Brown Law Group’s Camden County criminal defense attorneys can answer your many questions after you have been charged with a crime.
The important thing to remember is that even when you are charged with a criminal offense, you still have rights, and it is our job as criminal defense lawyers to ensure those rights are protected.
Every part of the criminal law process, from the initial arrest to a potential trial can be a harrowing experience. It is vital that you have a criminal lawyer in Camden County, NJ on your side at the earliest possible time, ideally immediately after your arrest, to ensure your rights are protected during every stage of the legal process.
Bail VS ROR
After an arrest, depending on the charge, the defendant may be released on their own recognizance, also known as ROR. This means that the person charged may be released under certain conditions while they await trial. The decision whether the defendant is released on ROR, or is instead detained, must be made within 48 hours of the arrest.
Since cash bail has been almost entirely eradicated in New Jersey, the law gives power to the court system to determine whether or not someone can be held, except under circumstances where detention is mandatory.
Additionally, a pre-trial detention hearing may be conducted, and in these cases, it is incredibly important to have a qualified criminal defense attorney present.
Appearing Before a Judge
When a defendant first appears before a judge, it is at their “first appearance,” which is when defendants are formally advised of what charges they are facing, and whether they will be detained. First appearances before a judge are scheduled within 48 hours of the arrest. During this time, defendants do have a right to legal counsel, and it would be wise to hire an attorney for their first appearance.
The first appearance involves the determination of whether there is substantial evidence supporting the charges filed against the defendant, and whether the case can proceed to trial. Without sufficient evidence, the charges may be dismissed or downgraded. Police reports, victims involved in the alleged crime, and witnesses may be gathered and interviewed by the prosecutor before this time.
Pre-Trial Detention Hearing
When a defendant is set to be detained, the prosecutor must motion for a detention hearing. However, the charges the defendant is facing must fall under specific categories in order to do this. A detention hearing may also be called if the defendant has previous convictions that fall under such specific categories, or the prosecutor has reason to believe the defendant will not show up for court, may obstruct evidence, pose a danger to the community, etc.
An extension of the time a defendant remains in custody may also be called for by the prosecutor, if the defendant is detained.
It is important to have a qualified criminal defense attorney on your side during pre-trial detention hearings, as this will help protect your rights, possibly reduce the time you will be detained, or limit the chances you will be detained at all, and increase the likelihood of a fast trial.
In some cases, a defendant may be allowed to participate in a Pretrial Intervention Program (PIT), which offers an alternative to incarceration.
In cases where the defendant is facing serious charges, a pre-arraignment or pre-indictment conference is held before the case is presented to a grand jury. This gives the defendant a chance to accept or negotiate a plea bargain, thereby accepting a reduction in their sentence or charges, in exchange for pleading guilty or no contest. They may also be able to apply for PTI during this time.
Hiring a qualified criminal defense attorney in New Jersey to represent you when you are facing serious criminal charges can help you get the most out of any pre-indictment conference. Ultimately, whether you accept or reject a plea bargain is your decision to make, however, a lawyer with experience in these matters will be able to appropriately advise you, and possibly negotiate a better deal on your behalf.
It is important to remember that prosecutors only share the strongest evidence they have against you, which means there is little chance you will see the case from all angles, which can sway you into agreeing to a plea deal that is not in your best interest. A defense attorney will ensure your case is properly evaluated from all sides, negotiate for a better sentence/charge reduction, no indictment, or advise you to move forward with a non-guilty plea if they feel your case will be successful in court.
Trusted Camden County Criminal Defense Lawyers
At Rebel Brown Law Group, we strive to ensure all of our clients receive the best legal defense possible. If you or a loved one has recently been charged with a criminal offense, and you are looking for an experienced criminal law attorney who can protect your rights, contact our team today.
From building a strong case against the prosecution, to explaining the difference between indictable offenses and disorderly persons offenses, petty disorderly persons offenses, and more, the team at Rebel Brown Law Group is here for you.
Don’t wait to seek legal representation—call our law office today at (856) 881-5000 to get the legal defense you need and deserve, and protect your future!