If you’ve been arrested or charged with a crime, you need the immediate assistance of a criminal defense lawyer. You need a tough, experienced criminal lawyer who is devoted to, and passionate about, defending the criminally accused. You need the DeRouen Law Firm. We have exceptional trial skills and a reputation for aggressively defending people charged with crimes. Don’t waste another second, give us a call today (713) 208-6404
Type of Cases We Handle:
- Aggravated Assault
- Domestic Violence
- Criminal Mischief
- Disorderly Conduct
- Probation Violations
- Expunctions & Non-Disclosures
The Criminal Justice Process
When you or a loved one face criminal charges in Texas, it is important to understand the criminal justice process. This includes:
You may be arrested during the commission of a crime or after a criminal investigation. If the police conducted a criminal investigation, then they may obtain a search warrant or a felony indictment before you are arrested and booked into jail.
Initial court appearance
Within 48 hours of your arrest, you will go before a magistrate to hear the charges against you, your constitutional rights, and the conditions for your release. For a violent crime, you may be denied release upon bail, or the bail amount may be high.
Release on bail
If you are granted release upon bail, you, your family, or friends can work with a bail bondsman to post the amount necessary. Despite being released from jail, you may not be entirely free. Judges can order a number of conditions upon your release, including travel restrictions.
A formal complaint or indictment-Prosecutors must either file a formal complaint against you for misdemeanor charges, or go to a grand jury for a felony indictment. A grand jury is a private proceeding during which prosecutors present evidence to a group of 12 of your peers. These jurors determine whether there is probable cause of your guilt. If there is, they will hand down an indictment against you.
Once prosecutors officially bring the charges against you, your first court hearing is your arraignment. You will hear the exact charges against you and receive a copy of the complaint or indictment. This is also your first chance to enter a guilty or not guilty plea.
Following your arraignment (at which you will typically plead not guilty), there will be a number of hearings. For instance, your attorney may file various motions seeking dismissal of your case or inadmissibility of certain evidence.
If your team and prosecutors are not able to reach a plea agreement and you do not plead guilty and the prosecution does not dismiss your case, then your case will go to trial. During this process, each side has the chance to present an argument backed by evidence. Either the judge or a jury will determine your guilt. If you are found guilty, the judge or jury will hand down your sentence.