Legal Information for Family, Friends and the Arrestee
Andrew J. Williams, Attorney at Law has been providing criminal defense services in and around the communities of Kingwood and Humble for more than 15 years. He offers clients legal advice and representation that is clear, straightforward and realistic.
The hours and days after an arrest can be confusing, especially for people who are involved for the first time in the criminal justice system. For that reason, we are happy to provide this general information about what to do after an arrest. He urges you to contact his office for advice specific to your circumstances.
The First Phone Call
Most people think they should call a friend, relative or lawyer after being arrested and taken to jail. In Mr. Williams’ opinion, the better move is to call a bail bond company. An attorney can do little good while the client is still in jail. If you call a friend or family member after being arrested, then that person can arrange for bond. You should expect the bond process to take at least eight to 16 hours.
Keep Quiet Until You Talk to a Lawyer
Give as little information as possible to police. These conversations can all be used as evidence against you. You may need to give the bond company basic information about the charges against you, but resist the urge to explain yourself. Talk to a lawyer before you talk to anyone else.
The first formal hearing is usually the arraignment. If possible, hire a lawyer before your arraignment. In our experience, people without a lawyer tend to talk too much at the arraignment — and again, any statements made at the arraignment can be used as evidence against you. Let your lawyer handle the procedures and the process and serve as your spokesperson in any negotiations with prosecutors. At the arraignment, the judge will give you additional time to find a lawyer if you do not already have one.
After the arraignment, the proceedings differ depending on the seriousness of the charges.
The Federal Criminal System
The above information all relates to arrests in the Texas state criminal system. If you are arrested by federal law enforcement officers, you will be taken almost immediately before a federal magistrate judge for an initial appearance. You will be interviewed about your personal background and the judge will ask if you can hire a lawyer or if you qualify for a court-appointed attorney. The magistrate will then allow you to make phone calls to arrange for legal representation.
The next step in a federal criminal case is the probable cause or detention hearing. At the probable cause hearing, the judge will decide whether the arrestee may be released on bond. If possible, a lawyer should represent you at the probable cause hearing.
Contact Board Certified Andrew J. Williams, Attorney at Law – Phones Answered 24 Hours Daily
If you or a loved one needs legal representation after an arrest, call toll free 281-358-9111, or contact him online to talk with an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Telephone calls are answered in the evenings and on weekends.