Being involved in the Florida criminal process can be a daunting and overwhelming experience. From the moment of arrest to the trial, there are various stages and complexities to navigate. At the Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A., we understand individuals' challenges during this process.
We have compiled this step-by-step guide to the Florida criminal process to help our clients understand the process and provide them with the best possible defense.
Arrest: The Initial Stage
The criminal process in Florida typically begins with an arrest. Whether it's a misdemeanor or felony charge, law enforcement will apprehend the suspect and take them into custody. At this point, the accused need to exercise their right to remain silent and seek legal representation immediately.
Booking and Bail
After the arrest, the suspect will be taken to a police station or jail for booking. During this process, personal information will be recorded, fingerprints and photographs will be taken, and the suspect will undergo a background check. Once the booking is complete, a bail hearing will be scheduled to determine whether the defendant can be released from custody before trial. An experienced criminal defense attorney from the Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A., can advocate for a fair and reasonable bail amount.
First Appearance and Arraignment
The first appearance typically occurs within 24 hours of the arrest. During this hearing, the defendant is informed of the charges against them, and if bail has not been set, the judge will decide whether the defendant can be released on bail or under their recognizance until the next stage. Following this, the arraignment takes place, during which the defendant enters a plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. Having legal representation by this point is crucial to make informed decisions.
During the pre-trial phase, the prosecution and defense gather evidence, conduct investigations, and negotiate. The Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A. defense attorney, will thoroughly review the evidence, challenge any unlawfully obtained evidence, and explore potential defense strategies. This phase may involve motions to suppress evidence, dismiss charges, or change venue.
In many criminal cases, the prosecution and defense may engage in plea bargaining, seeking a resolution without going to trial. The prosecution may offer reduced charges or a lesser sentence in exchange for a guilty plea. However, it is crucial to have a skilled criminal defense attorney who can evaluate the offer's merits and negotiate the best possible deal on behalf of the defendant.
The case will proceed to trial if it does not resolve through plea bargaining. Both sides present their evidence during the trial, call witnesses, and argue with the jury. The prosecution is burdened to prove the defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The defense attorney at the Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A., will vigorously challenge the prosecution's case and present a strong defense on behalf of their client.
The next stage involves sentencing if the defendant is found guilty or pleads guilty. The judge considers various factors, such as the severity of the offense, the defendant's criminal history, and any mitigating circumstances, to determine an appropriate sentence. A skilled criminal defense attorney can advocate for a fair and just sentence considering the defendant's circumstances.
If a defendant is convicted and believes that legal errors occurred during the trial, they can appeal the decision. The appeals process allows a higher court to review the trial court's proceedings to determine if any errors warrant a new trial or a sentence modification.
Facing criminal charges in Florida can be an overwhelming and challenging experience. However, having a knowledgeable and experienced criminal defense attorney from the Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A., can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case. From the initial arrest to trial and beyond, our dedicated team will guide you through each step of the Florida criminal process, protecting your rights and fighting for the best possible outcome.
Contact the Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A., if you require assistance or have any questions!