All You Need to Know About Criminal Law
Don't Navigate the Legal System Alone
Dealing with criminal charges can be a scary and overwhelming experience for anyone. At Issa Castro, we understand this feeling, which is why our team of experienced lawyers has compiled a wealth of information to help guide you educate yourself through the ins and outs of criminal law.
However, despite our best effort to provide you with a complete library of everything you need to know, we also understand that every case is unique. Which is why we desire for you to gain valuable insights and knowledge through your scrolling, but also want you to know that we are here for you and have your back.
So whether you’re seeking legal advice or simply looking to educate yourself about criminal law, our expert team is here to answer any questions that arise.
Criminal Law Letters
As part of our commitment to providing the most valuable legal resources to the public, we offer a Criminal Law Letter Template that you can download for FREE.
This template includes a variety of sample letters that you can use to address common issues in criminal cases. Simply enter your email address in the form provided to receive the direct download link.
MOST COMMON QUESTION: What can I expect after I’m arrested?
You can expect that you’ll be treated unfairly. Seriously. The most important thing you can do is keep your cool. Lay low, stay cool, be nice. The government may not show you respect, so know that and keep yourself as calm as possible. In other words, remain silent and respectful. Yes, give your real name and address, but DO NOT talk to ANYONE about what did or didn’t happen in your case.
If you’re the loved one of someone who’s been arrested, they’re going to jail. They’ll be handcuffed, transported by the Atlanta Police Department to the county jail, and eventually be placed in a position to make a phone call. Our jails are pretty crowded, so that call might not come for 6 to 8 hours.
Sometimes your charges are bailable, and sometimes they’re not. Once you’ve been processed, the deputy in charge will let you know what’s up. If your charges are bailable, you’ll be given the chance to make a phone call, and do it in this order: loved one, bondsman, criminal defense attorney. If your charges are not bailable, you’ll appear before a magistrate judge (usually called a first appearance) who will address this bail situation.
Assuming you make bail, you’ll be released from custody as soon as the paperwork is done. Look, the county jail isn’t going to get you in and out like the Chick-fil-A drive thru, so you’re going to have to dig deep and find some patience.
In the meantime, your case is turned over to the District Attorney’s office…and that’s when they get to work. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
OTHER FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Criminal defense is important because it ensures that individuals accused of crimes are given a fair trial and that their rights are protected throughout the legal process. A criminal defense attorney is responsible for advocating for their client, challenging the evidence presented by the prosecution, and ensuring that the defendant is not unfairly punished. Without effective criminal defense, innocent individuals could be wrongfully convicted, and guilty individuals could be subjected to excessive or unjust punishments.
Criminal defense also plays a critical role in promoting the integrity and fairness of the legal system by holding the prosecution accountable and ensuring that the defendant receives a fair and impartial trial. Overall, criminal defense is a fundamental right and an essential component of a fair and just legal system.
This is where things get sticky. You’ll get another court date in the future (usually within a week) and you’ll be waiting in jail the whole time. At our office, we call this a preliminary hearing, but sometimes the state calls it a probable cause hearing.
The magistrate judge listens to the evidence and decides if there’s probable cause for the charge to stick. But – and this is a big but – this is NOT a trial, so the “burden of proof” is NOT on the prosecution. They don’t have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you’re guilty, which means if the judge buys the state’s story, you may be charged with a crime you didn’t commit. YEOW! Again, keep your cool and hire a criminal defense attorney yesterday.
If your charges fall into certain categories, you’ll wait several weeks for a bond hearing, where you’ll appear before a superior court judge to decide if bail should be set.
Tangling with the law is not easy. But we’re in it to win it, and we don’t stop until our clients have the best defense possible.
How to Choose the Right Lawyer?
Remember this saying: You can’t do a good deal with a bad partner.
Chances are, you’ve been burned when picking people to work with—that might be what landed you in this situation to begin with. So let’s talk about a few things to look out for when you’re hiring an attorney to defend your rights and your freedom.
Pay attention to whether you feel seen and heard. If the lawyer doesn’t leave room for you to talk or finds their allocution more compelling than your experience, ask yourself if they’ll be the right partner for you. When you tangled with the cops, we implored you to exercise your right to remain silent. Talking to your lawyer should feel natural and easy.
Does the conversation flow easily between you and your lawyer? We believe communication creates connection, so we do what we can to keep the lines open. When you work with us, you’ll have our personal cell phone numbers so that you’ve got a lifeline when you need it.
You’ve developed some pretty savvy people-reading skills by this point, so tune in to your gut sense. You remember that time you heard a whisper that something was wrong but moved forward anyway and shit went sideways? Let yourself hear the whisper, whether it’s saying yes or no.
Trust your gut when you’re interviewing criminal defense lawyers. Oh, and something to think about: You may not think you can trust your gut because someone you trusted sold you out. It’s our commitment to you to be safe, reliable, and trustworthy. We’ve seen the difference it makes in people’s lives to have someone believe in them, so we strive not only to litigate fiercely but also so show people that they matter and we care.
Make sure your lawyer is comfortable in a courtroom. Though there’s a chance that your case will settle out of court, there is also a chance that we’ll need to go to trial. Find out if your lawyer has defended charges like yours and how many times they’ve been to court. That experience is invaluable in negotiating with the state, so you’ll only benefit if you hire a criminal defense lawyer who has experience in front of a jury.
Does your lawyer excel in a courtroom? Skills like strategy, case preparation, investigation, and defense are at the forefront of our minds when we work with our clients. We’re considering not only how the government might view your case but also how a jury would so that you get the best outcome possible.
Have more questions, or in need of legal assistance?
WE’RE HERE FOR YOU!
The first step is to call or text 404-491-7561 to schedule a free consultation. During that time, you’ll get to tell us your story and we’ll show you how we can help. We’ll talk about fees, payment plans, and what you can expect when you work with us. You’ll hear all of the options we see in your case, and you’ll have the information you need to decide if we’re the right lawyers for you.