No one plans on being arrested. If you get arrested, you will definitely face a stressful experience. This experience will become more traumatizing if you are innocent, and you didn't break any law.
An arrest for a criminal offense can result in negative, life-altering consequences. To avoid these negative consequences, you should contact an attorney as soon as possible.
After you've been arrested, it is obvious that you would want to get back your freedom quickly. However, Nevada Law Enforcement Departments will require you to post bail before being released.
It is common for innocent people to become arrested. They may be victims of bad identification, or they may simply be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Even though you are completely innocent, you still need to observe certain rules. First, don't give statements to the police without consulting with an attorney. You may believe that you can succeed in convincing the police that you are innocent. In most cases, you will just worsen your situation. You will have to start building an excellent defense strategy immediately. Do not admit that you did something you did not do, as the police will use anything you say as evidence before the court.
In this article, we will explain to you what you need to do if you are arrested, but innocent. We will also explain to you how you can get back your freedom quickly after an arrest. Let us get started.
What Happens During Arrest?
You cannot predict when you will be arrested. You can be arrested at any time of the day/night, regardless of the location where you are.
Law enforcement should observe specific procedures when arresting you. The U.S. Supreme Court highlighted these procedures in the famous case of Miranda vs. Arizona. According to the Supreme Court, the police should read to you the following statements when arresting you:
- That you have the right to remain silent
- That they can use whatever you say against you in court
- That you have the right to contact an attorney
When arresting you, the police can also decide to search your person and your property. If you have any money or personal property with you at the time of arrest, the law enforcement officer will confiscate them and create an inventory. Then, you will be asked to sign it. You should only agree to sign it after you have verified the inventory’s contents.
What Happens After Arrest?
After you have been arrested, you will be taken to custody. First, you will be booked. During booking, the police officer will record your personal details and the crime you've been suspected of committing. He/she will also conduct a background check and take your photographs and fingerprints.
The booking process may take several minutes or a couple of hours, depending on the number of other arrested persons in the queue. If you have been arrested for a minor offense, you can avoid booking, and instead, sign a citation. By signing the citation, you will have agreed that you will attend all the required court sessions.
Arraignment in Court
The term ‘arraignment’ refers to the first court session that you must attend after you have been arrested. You will only be arraigned in court if the prosecutor files charges against you.
Sometimes, the prosecutor may not press any charge against you, especially if he/she discovers that you are innocent or if he/she finds out that there is another suspect. In these situations, the police will release you.
But, the prosecutor can still charge you, although you are innocent. During the arraignment, your charges will be read out to you, and you will be asked to take a plea. You can plead either ‘guilty’ or ‘not guilty.’ We recommend that you should not attend the arraignment without first consulting an attorney.
Also, the judge may decide to release you on your own recognizance. This means that you will promise the court in writing that you will not miss any court sessions without having a valid reason.
If you do not become released on your own recognizance, you will have to post bail. Many defendants in Las Vegas end up taking this route. This is because Nevada courts are usually reluctant to release individuals without posting bail.
The term ‘bail’ refers to an amount of money that you will pay into court to guarantee that you will attend all court sessions. The amount of bail is determined based on the nature of the offense you've been suspected to commit. For instance, a person who is charged with a misdemeanor may pay a lower bail amount, in comparison to an individual facing felony charges.
Winning your Case
To win your case, you must build a robust defense strategy. You cannot do this without the help of an experienced and reliable criminal defense attorney.
Do not attempt to speak for yourself, no matter how much you are innocent. If you do not hire an attorney, some of your legal rights may be violated.
There are various defense strategies that you can use, depending on your situation. For instance, if you were merely at the wrong place at the wrong time, you can use the defense of mistake of facts.
You will get back your bail amount after your case has been concluded, regardless of whether you have won or lost it. However, if you miss court sessions without having a valid reason, you will have to forfeit your bail amount.
Instituting a False Arrest Civil Claim
Sometimes, law enforcement may discover that they arrested an innocent person and release you. Also, the court may find out that you didn't commit any crime, and declare the arrest as wrongful.
Victims of false arrest in Nevada can institute a civil claim against the Law Enforcement Department for compensation. Additionally, you can also sue the individual officer who arrested you.
If you win, you will be awarded compensatory damages for pain and suffering, as well as lost wages. The court can also award you punitive damages if the actions of the law enforcement were somehow egregious.
Find a Las Vegas Bail Bonds Agent Near Me
If you or your loved one has been arrested in Las Vegas, we invite you to contact us at Express Bail Bonds. We will help you post bail. Call us today at 702-633-2245.