An arraignment is one of the first steps of the criminal process in Georgia. Here’s what you should know about arraignments and when to get legal help from an attorney you can trust.
An arraignment is a criminal hearing that takes place soon after you are arrested. At the hearing, you’ll be informed of the charges against you (which may be more than what you were told when you were initially taken into police custody) and asked basic questions about your identity and employment.
Should You Have a Lawyer at Your Arraignment?
At the time of your arraignment, you can have legal representation. If you haven’t yet contacted your own attorney, a legal aid will be assigned to you. In most cases, you don’t have to tell anyone whether or not you need to be provided with an attorney; one is typically present at the arraignment already.
However, you may not necessarily benefit from having a pro bono lawyer. Public attorneys tend to be less experienced and may not have even held a position at a firm yet, which could be detrimental to your case.
Release vs. Bail
The second purpose of your arraignment, after informing you of the charges you face and obtaining your information, is to determine whether or not to release you from police custody or set a bail amount. This decision is made based on a variety of factors, including but not limited to:
- The crimes you are accused of and their severity
- Your criminal history, if any
- Your flight risk
If you are deemed a flight risk or committed a serious crime, you are less likely to be released on your own recognizance and the amount of bail set may be quite high. In that case, your attorney may be able to argue for a lower bail amount.
After Your Arraignment
At the end of your arraignment hearing, you will be given a document that lists your next court hearing. You are required to attend this hearing and if you don’t, you could face even stiffer legal penalties.
Charged With a Crime? You Need a Defense Lawyer Today
If you were charged with a crime of any kind in Marrietta, GA, regardless of its seriousness, your future, record, and reputation are on the line. You need swift and zealous legal representation. Contact Gregory Cobb for your appointment today at 770.627.3221