Below, an Alexandria criminal defense lawyer discusses five of the most important things you should know when accused or charged with a criminal offense. Call to schedule a free consultation today.
Speaking to an attorney early on is crucial in helping you get in the best possible position to have a successful outcome in your case. An attorney will have your interests in mind and they will be thinking only about how to help you out of your tough situation. By providing advice and counsel that is honed through years of experience dealing with people in similar situations, they can help guide you through this rough time. An attorney knows what works in court.
They know how your actions will play out in court and can advise you throughout the course of your case from pre-arrest through trial. Additionally, the sooner you contact an attorney the sooner they can start building your defense by collecting evidence, obtaining records, and advising you on things you can do during the pendency of your case, So contacting an attorney early on is extremely important to making sure you get a good outcome in court.
Local laws often come into play. Alexandria police have the ability to enforce the Alexandria City Code and they often do. Additionally, aside from just the charges themselves, the city ordinances are often used as the basis for first approaching an individual. So, Alexandria has noise ordinance violation and their own parking rules, and so even though you might not be violating state law, if you are violating one of those local ordinances, police have the ability to enforce those ordinances too. Alexandria has a system for charging trespassing on city-owned property through the Alexandria Redevelopment Housing Authority. That system is unique to Alexandria that allows police to approach individuals that are violating those city laws. So yes, Alexandria local ordinances do play a factor. They are the basis for a lot of interaction between police and citizens and they can be charged in and of themselves.
Asking to speak to a lawyer absolutely does not imply guilt. Speaking to an attorney in no way can be used to infer or imply guilt whether at trial, pretrial hearings, or even to the police officer. Speaking to an attorney is simply something anyone involved in the criminal justice system whether guilty or not should not do. You are protected by the laws of the state and the Constitution. Failure to speak with police cannot be used against you and it cannot be used to imply guilt.
You should know that you should take any charge seriously because the prosecutor will and the court will and it can affect your life.
You should also know that Alexandria is a small tight-knit community and because of that the prosecutors are very responsive to the community’s concerns about crime in their neighborhood. In many ways, that small tight-knit community feeling in Alexandria applies to the legal community as well. The lawyers know each other, the judges, the prosecutors and police. So it is important to hire an attorney who has experience in Alexandria. Having an experienced attorney can help you breakthrough that network and get the best possible outcome for you.