Criminal Defense Attorney Greenville, MI
If you’re looking for the criminal defense attorney in Greenville, MI, contact our lawyers at Blanchard Law. No one is more respected or fights harder on behalf of those accused of crimes than the attorneys at our law firm.
If you have recently been arrested and charged with a crime, are you feeling scared or unsure about what to expect in the near future, or have concerns about whether or not you may be going to jail or prison for the charges against you — then you should call a member of our legal team as soon as possible.
Right to Remain Silent
The right to remain silent seems straightforward; however, there are a few stipulations to this right. While it is true that you do not have to answer any questions posed by arresting officers or detectives, these professionals can speak to you. Also, there is likely no harm in identifying yourself and answering some basic information, as long as you do not implicate yourself.
Beyond talking, the right to remain silent will often be accompanied by something like, “anything you do or say can and will be used against you.” This means that your actions can be just as illicit as your words. Therefore, when arrested, it is likely in your best interest to remain silent, follow orders, and ask for your MI criminal defense attorney in Greenville.
Right to an Attorney
Police will also advise you of your right to have an attorney present. However, it is crucial to understand that there are two ways to obtain legal representation.
- Hire an attorney -If you have the financial means, you can hire outside counsel. Make sure that the attorney you hire is well-versed in criminal proceedings because they will make sure that you do not say anything that will hurt your case.
- Public defender -If you are low-income and cannot afford representation, the courts will provide you with a public defender. These lawyers are very familiar with criminal proceedings and often have relationships that may be beneficial to your case.
Right to Stop Questioning
Pay attention to all of your Miranda rights as they are read to you because one of the last things mentioned is the right to stop questioning. Therefore, if you choose to talk to the police and willingly answer their questions, you can stop the conversation at any moment and request an attorney. Don’t be intimidated by overzealous detectives. If you are uncomfortable at any time, tell them to stop and ask for your lawyer.
Miranda rights are a crucial element of criminal law and defense. Police must read them to you, and it is vital that you understand. If you don’t understand, then say so when asked, that is your right. Also, don’t be afraid to reach out to our law firm and ask questions.
Time is NOT On Your Side
Following your arrest and charge, the clock starts ticking. You can feel confident in knowing the prosecution will be reviewing your case very shortly. Sooner, rather than later, a hearing will be scheduled and at this court appearance you will be asked something like “How do you plead?” You will have a short opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty and a court date will be set for your sentencing or trial (depending on how you plead). All things considered, this is a relatively fast process.
Once you have been charged with a misdemeanor or felony you have the right to a lawyer. Your options will be to have a court appointed lawyer or a private criminal defense lawyer. We encourage you to consider a criminal defense attorney from Greenville at Blanchard Law.
First Steps to Take if You Are Being Investigated for a Crime:
If you are contacted by law enforcement because you are being investigated as a result of criminal allegations being made against you, you should take the following actions:
- Politely tell the police officer who wants to speak to you that you will not speak to them without an attorney present. Do not speak to the officer any further or answer any questions. If the officer persists in wanting to speak to you, the only response you should give is that you do not want to speak to them without an attorney present. You should do this whether you are guilty, innocent, or somewhere in between. Even if you are completely innocent, you have to understand that the officer’s goal in investigating is to prove that you committed the crime as alleged. Your words can and will be twisted to make you look guilty, even when you are innocent.
- Don’t talk to anyone about the allegations or your version of events, even friends and family members. You don’t want to turn your friends and family into witnesses that the prosecution will eventually use against you.
- Contact a Greenville, MI criminal defense attorney right away. There are many steps that a lawyer can take during the investigative phase that may help you to avoid charges being brought, or to begin the process of mitigating the damage from the charges that may be brought by the police and prosecuting attorney.
- Begin to prepare for the possibility that a warrant will be issued for your arrest. You will want to make sure that you have funds available to post a bond in the event that you are arrested, and have a good understanding of the process of turning yourself in and what you should do when you are arraigned.
The Pros and Cons of a Court Appointed Lawyer
Pro: Free or available at a discounted rate depending on your income status
Pro: They have passed the BAR Exam and will be a real lawyer
Pro: They may work closely with the prosecutor
Pro: They know the local court system very well
Con: They may have many cases at the same time
Con: You will not have much one to one attention with them
Con: They may or may not have very much experience in handling your charges
Con: They may lack the financial resources and time to build a strong defense
The Pros and Cons of a Private Criminal Defense Lawyer
Pro: They will have passed the BAR Exam
Pro: They will have direct experience in handling criminal defense charges
Pro: A criminal defense lawyer will have the resources to investigate your case
Pro: He or she will be able to meet you, as needed, to discuss your case
Pro: They will be there at your hearing or other scheduled court dates to be your voice
Con: You will have to pay for a criminal defense lawyer
Con: Criminal defense lawyers cannot offer contingency fees
First Steps to Take if You Have Been Charged with a Crime:
If you have been arrested or charged with a crime, a MI criminal defense attorney suggest taking these first steps:
- Hire an attorney. Your first call should be to an attorney who is experienced and successful at defending criminal charges. You want to hire someone who specializes specifically in defending those accused of crimes. Don’t hire a “general practice” lawyer who does estate planning and family law and dabbles in criminal defense.
- Make arrangements with our legal team to turn yourself in on the warrant and to post your bond. We can guide you through the process and make it as painless as possible.
- Don’t talk to the police, family members, friends, or anyone else about what is happening in your case. The only person you should be speaking to about the facts of your case is your lawyer.
Types of Charges a Criminal Defense Lawyer May Handle
As a team of Michigan criminal defense attorneys in Greenville at Blanchard Law, we have helped people who have been charged with:
- A felony or misdemeanor
- Drug possession
- Drug distribution
- Assault and/or battery
- Domestic violence
- Sexual assault
- Breaking and entering
- Armed robbery
- Assault with a deadly weapon
- Carrying a concealed weapon
Understanding Miranda Rights
If you have never been arrested, you have still likely heard some version of the Miranda warning, which stipulates that you have the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney, and the right to stop questioning without an attorney present.
Know Your Rights
Being charged with a crime is a very serious matter. Regardless of whether or not you were charged with a felony or misdemeanor, or whether you believe you are innocent, you should not attempt to handle your charges without legal representation. Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney in Greenville, MI at Blanchard Law if you’ve been charged with a crime, by dialing 616-773-2945.