Serious Crimes Require A Serious Defense Lawyer
Texas is notoriously strict on criminal offenders and has the largest prison population in the country. Likewise, its incarceration rate consistently ranks among the country’s highest.
Simply put, if you commit a crime in Texas, you are more likely to end up in jail than you would be in most other states.
If you’re facing criminal charges, then you should work with an experienced attorney who knows how to assemble the strongest possible defense. Our team at Kyle Law Firm can help. Based in New Braunfels and serving clients throughout Central Texas, our lawyers have more than 60 combined years of experience protecting clients against criminal allegations. Our criminal defense attorneys have litigated more than 100 jury trials to verdicts in all types of cases. They are not afraid of the courtroom. Fill out our contact form or call us at 830-620-9402 to schedule your free consultation.
Aggressive Defense In All Types Of Criminal Matters
Our attorneys are skilled in defending individuals against a full array of charges, including those involving:
- Drunk driving
- The possession, manufacturing or distribution of drugs and other controlled substances
- Violent offenses
- Violations of probation
- Theft crimes
When you are facing criminal charges, it can seem like an overwhelming and bleak situation. Our lawyers will help you avoid penalties that could damage your reputation. In some cases, they can help you seek an expunction or look for other ways to keep your record sealed.
Frequently Asked Questions
Facing criminal charges can come with many questions. These are a few of the most common questions our lawyers receive.
When should I hire a criminal defense attorney?
It is wise to speak with a criminal defense attorney as soon as you are charged with a crime. A common misconception is that you’ll “look guilty” if you ask for a lawyer before speaking to police or investigators. Don’t risk incriminating yourself by giving any kind of statement without a defense attorney present.
A good criminal defense attorney will skillfully communicate with investigators on your behalf without saying anything that is admissible in court. They will also be able to collect information that may be used to get your charges reduced or even dropped.
Regardless of what crime you or a loved one have been charged with, having an experienced criminal defense lawyer on your side is crucial. It’s your fundamental right and in your best interests to hire one that can skillfully navigate the legal process and work to ensure the best outcome possible for your case. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to help you understand the details of the charges filed against you, review with you the best defense and plea agreement strategies, and prepare you for the legal proceedings to come.
A public defender will be appointed to your case if you cannot afford to hire a criminal defense lawyer. However, it’s important to be aware that if the court later determines that you are financially fit to have hired your own attorney, you will be required to pay for the public defender’s services.
What is an arraignment?
An arraignment is a defendant’s first appearance in court, regardless of whether they’ve been taken into custody. During the arraignment, a defendant is formally presented with the charges against them and asked how they plead to these charges. It’s also when a judge determines whether the defendant should be detained or released until their trial. If the court chooses to detain the defendant, they must also set bail.
What is bail?
Bail is an amount of money that the court sets for the conditional release of the detained defendant. It grants temporary freedom to the defendant so that they can adequately prepare for their case and ensures that they return to court to appear for their trial.
A defendant may hire a bail bond company to post their bail, and they will get their money back after they appear in court (minus a premium for this service, which can be up to 10% of the bail amount). If the defendant fails to appear for their trial, the bond company will revoke the bond and hire a bounty hunter to locate and seize the defendant.
A criminal defense attorney will work with the court on behalf of their defendant to lower or waive their bail amount. They can also negotiate with bail bond companies for a lower premium rate.
What is a preliminary hearing?
A preliminary hearing is a pretrial proceeding for felony charges in which the judge determines whether there is probable cause to justify pursuing a criminal case and, if so, whether the prosecution has enough evidence to charge the defendant with the crime.
This stage gives your attorney the chance to examine the case against you and build your defense accordingly. During the preliminary hearing, your lawyer may dispute the evidence, toss out witness testimonies and spot weaknesses in the prosecution’s case.
How long does it take to get a preliminary hearing?
A preliminary hearing typically takes place shortly after charges have been filed against the defendant. It must be held no later than 30 days after the defendant has been arrested. However, a defendant has the right to delay the preliminary hearing in order to prepare their case.
What is a pretrial conference?
A pretrial conference is a legal proceeding that takes place before the trial begins. Its purpose is to ensure a “fair and expeditious trial.” During the pretrial conference, both parties meet before the judge to determine which evidence and witness testimonies will be admissible in court.
At the pretrial conference, the defense attorney may discuss a plea bargain with the district attorney. The majority of criminal cases end with a plea agreement during the pretrial conference and never reach the trial phase.
If a plea agreement is not reached during the pretrial conference, a trial date will be set. In some cases, it behooves a defendant to go to trial rather than take a plea bargain. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to determine your best course of action.
What happens at trial?
At trial, the prosecution and defense make their cases, present evidence and cross-examine witnesses. Once closing statements are given, the jury (or the judge, if no jury has been appointed) deliberates and returns with a verdict: guilty or not guilty. In Texas, the jury’s verdict must be unanimous in order to convict the defendant. A mistrial is declared if a unanimous vote cannot be reached.
How long does a criminal case last?
Criminal case durations vary between two months and two years on average. However, the duration of each criminal case depends on many factors. As the defendant, it is important to allow your defense attorney ample time to prepare your defense to deliver the best possible outcome for your case.
Get Support For Criminal Charges Today
It is essential to start building a strong defense early on when you are facing charges. With over 60 combined years of experience, our attorneys at Kyle Law Firm will help you get started. To schedule a free consultation, call our New Braunfels office at 830-620-9402 or contact us online.