Were you arrested in a drug-related case in McAllen? Things might seem a little bleak right now, but the United States judicial system places the burden of proof upon your accuser. Going through due process of law works to your advantage.
If you were arrested or have concerns that you may face arrest for charges of drug use, possession, or even distribution, remain calm. A skilled attorney can help you navigate the entire process.
You can call the McAllen drug defense lawyers at Kenny Perez Law for a free consultation. After you fill us in on your situation, we can inform you of your rights, look into it further, and see how we can help you fight the charges and bring your case to the best possible conclusion. Call us right now so we can keep events from spinning out of control and bring stability to your life.
Table of Contents
Use your rights
After your arrest, officers should read you your Miranda rights—which means you reserve the right to remain silent. You have the right not to answer questions regarding the investigation. You have the right to have your attorney present during any questioning. Your attorney can advise you whether or not to answer questions or if the interview is overstepping legal boundaries.
Police often put people in a questioning room without being charged. You might even find yourself dressed out in jail scrubs. They may take away your personal items, clothing, and phone. Some remain in jail from arrest to conviction—which can take several months.
Here are the steps from arrest to trial.
- Arrest/investigation: This is the point of contact. The arresting officers use probable cause provided by eyewitnesses, anonymous tips, traffic stops, or other moments where they suspect you in a criminal investigation. In which case, you are the defendant.
- Charging: The prosecution takes information from the arresting officer and determines whether or not there is enough evidence against you. This determines felony or misdemeanor charges and their degree of severity. The judge will set your bail. Do not admit to committing a crime, sign a confession, or take responsibility for any charge against you without consulting an attorney.
- Bail: Many people do not have the immediate money for their bail. A bail bond agent might be able to put the money up for your release, which is usually a percentage of the total amount a judge states. In some states, your attorney may be able to handle your bail in-house, which streamlines the process.
- Arraignment: Your arraignment is your first court appearance. The court will hear charges against you. Here, you may enter your plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. The arraignment schedules future court appearances and proceedings. Do not “cut a deal” with the DA without consulting us. This is known as a plea bargain. Don’t fall for that trap.
- Discovery: This collects the investigations, evidence, statements, and other information pertinent to the case and provides it to both the prosecution and defense.
- Preliminary hearings/Pre-trial motions: This is where each side files motions in the case to bring evidence or suppress evidence as necessary. This is also when the attorneys will inform the court whether or not there’s a plea bargain. A plea bargain is usually a plea of guilty or no contest for a lighter sentence to expedite the process, especially if the evidence against you is overwhelming, and a plea might lessen your sentence.
- Trial: Absent a plea bargain, a jury trial may result. Both sides present evidence and witnesses before the court. At this point, the prosecution will attempt to prove your guilt. Your attorney argues your innocence. If you are determined to be innocent, you are acquitted, and the process stops. If you are found guilty, the court will sentence you. If the court convicts you unfairly, you can try to appeal the decision. This may reverse your conviction, require a retrial, or just affirm the conviction.
Drugs in America
For decades, drugs have played a critical role in the criminal justice system, with millions of Americans serving time for drug-related convictions in prisons all over the country.
Plea bargains expedite the process and save time and money. However, a plea bargain still means a conviction. Frequently, plea bargains target disenfranchised social groups. Lower-class families and minorities feel that their only choice is to serve time in jail for a minor drug offense. But this often leads to lifelong wage issues due to hiring frictions. They may even struggle to attend decent colleges due to their criminal records. There is also the risk that you could become inculcated in gangs while in jail.
Drugs are not discerning in which communities they affect, being in the hands of the rich and poor alike. The effects of the criminal justice system, however, hit the poor and racial minorities far harder.
Some drug users are self-medicating. Often, they suffer from mental illnesses, chronic pain, or other issues. Many people sitting in jail due to drug arrests could have fought the charges against them with help from a drug defense lawyer.
Contact an Experienced McAllen Drug Defense Attorney
Whether it is narcotics, prescription medication, selling, trafficking, or simply personal use, a drug conviction carries significant consequences which will follow you for life. Drug addiction is an illness that requires medical treatment instead of prison. Unfortunately, the courts don’t always see it that way without a proper defense.
A felony conviction with drug charges can haunt you for the rest of your life. Contact Kenny Perez Law if you were arrested or worry that police may arrest you for drug charges. Our skilled McAllen drug defense lawyers can explain your options and the repercussions of taking a plea bargain or going to trial. You can reach us at (956) 544-9292 or through our contact page. Please call now so we can start to help you right away with a free consultation.
Kenny Perez Law
1900 N Exp 77. Suite A,
Brownsville, Texas 78521
“Definitely a law firm that you can trust! Professional, reasonable, and knowledgeable. The legal team has great customer service skills. They were able to help and guide us every step of the way after our accident.” – Cynthia Barrera
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