Should I hire an attorney regarding misdemeanor charges?

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Should I hire an attorney regarding misdemeanor charges?

I was recently arrested and charged with 4 separate misdemeanors. These include theft, Minor in consumption and false report. I was released from jail the next day and am set to have my first court appearance in 3 weeks. I am 20 years old, working and a college student and this is my first offense. I was caught with a traffic barricade and the charges stacked up from there. What are my likely options and what would be the smart thing to do at this point?

Asked on August 10, 2016 under Criminal Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The smart thing is to hire an attorney: a lawyer knows the rules and procedures, and may be able to exclude some evidence and dismiss some charges on procedural grounds, if there was a flaw in the stop or the police report. Moreover, attorneys know best how to present your case, how to negotiate, and how to get to the best possible outcome for you. Having a lawyer will maximize your change of minimizing the consequences; it is well worth the cost. Hire a lawyer who handles cases like this (e.g. minor criminal) in this court, and who knows the players at the courthouse (e.g. the judges; the prosecutor).


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