A Los Angeles Criminal Defense lawyer can start working on your criminal case well before the first hearing. There is often a lot to do to prepare for a hearing, and this work can start immediately upon having been retained.
Many people will wait until the hearing to hire an attorney. The problem with this is that it gives the attorney very little time to prepare for hearing. An attorney will most certainly want to review the discovery that is being presented in the case. Discovery is any type of exhibits, documents, tapes, visuals that the prosecutor has in their possession that relates to the case. This most often is video surveillance of the arrest, and the police report. Oftentimes it can include information on the breathalyzer.
These are important pieces of information for the attorney to know when they analyze possible defenses or arguments to bring up pertaining to your case. For example, if there is blatant misconduct on the officers behalf, and they have not followed proper protocol, then there are strong chances of getting the evidence dismissed. Proper motions must be filed in a timely manner and must be addressed immediately.
Furthermore, the prosecutor will offer a plea bargain when you are in court. This is generally an offer to accept a lower charge or sentence, if the person being charged is willing to plead guilty right away. If the attorney does not know what happened at the arrest, or what the facts are of the case, they are not able to skillfully negotiate the plea, or to know whether it is a good idea to accept it or not.
Lets consider an example. Danny has been arrested for a DUI. When he was arrested, he was not driving but was parked in a parking lot sleeping in his back seat. When Danny hires a legal professional he tells them his version of the facts. The attorney immediately makes some calls and obtains the police report which does, in fact, state that Danny was parked in a parking lot, sleeping in the back seat. The attorney automatically knows now that Prosecutors have a weak case because they will have to prove that at some point Danny was actually driving WHILE intoxicated. The officer’s observations, nor the report indicate that Danny was driving at any point.
Knowing the facts the attorney goes into the first court appearance confident in his case knowing Danny’s argument is strong and the Prosecutor’s are weak. Prosecution will likely offer a much lower charge, or possible dismissal.
The attorney cannot go into a hearing not knowing the facts, or the strength of the case. This is important leverage. If you have been arrested for suspicion of a DUI, do not hesitate to contact a DUI lawyer. Be sure to work quickly and immediately hire an attorney so that they can start working on your case as soon as possible.