Lenoir Criminal Defense Attorney
Being charged with a crime can be a stressful and trying time. Trying to figure out the intricacies of the law and understand how to proceed with the courts, on top of mountains of paperwork, can add extra stress as well. That is why it is important to have a North Carolina criminal defense lawyer on your side who can give you the best representation possible.
A good Lenoir defense lawyer can take the time to understand the unique situation of your case and meet you where you are in the criminal law process. At Helton, Cody & Associates, PLLC, our North Carolina criminal defense attorneys can fight hard to make sure your rights are defended. We may even get your criminal charges acquitted or your sentence greatly reduced.
Crimes That a Criminal Attorney Can Help Defend
Criminal defense attorneys can help defend individuals who have been accused of a wide range of crimes, including:
- Violent Crimes: These are committed against another person and include murder, assault, and battery.
- Property Crimes: These are committed against private or public property and include theft, burglary, and vandalism.
- White-Collar Crimes: These are financial crimes such as fraud, embezzlement, and money laundering.
- Drug Crimes: These are crimes involving controlled substances, such as possession, distribution, and trafficking of illegal drugs.
- Sex Crimes: These include sexual assault, rape, and child sexual abuse.
- DUI/DWI: This involves operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Computer Crimes: These involve the use of computers and the internet to commit crimes such as hacking, identity theft, and cyberstalking.
- Fraud: This includes a wide range of crimes in which individuals deceive others for financial gain.
- Racketeering: These are crimes committed as part of organized criminal activity, such as bribery and extortion.
- Homicide: This is the intentional ending of someone’s life and includes murder and manslaughter.
Criminal defense attorneys may also defend individuals accused of other types of crimes.
What to Do During an Arrest in North Carolina
If you have been accused of wrongdoing and are placed under arrest, it is important to stay calm. It is ideal to take note of your surroundings and the individuals involved in your arrest. This can help your attorney gather as much evidence as possible for your defense. These are the following steps you should take if you face arrest in North Carolina:
- Keep Calm: It is important to remain as calm as possible, even if you are feeling anxious or scared. Panicking will not help the situation and could make things worse.
- Know Your Rights: You have the constitutional right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. You should exercise these rights as soon as possible. Keep in mind that whatever you decide to say can potentially be used against you by the prosecutor and the police.
- Note the Particulars of Your Arrest: It is essential to keep in mind every aspect of your arrest, starting with the time the police pulled you over or stopped you. Try to keep a record of the things the officer said to you, your responses, and any other details you feel could be significant. Immediately, once you get the chance, note these details. This might aid your attorney in finding defenses that would enable you to plead innocent or have the charges dropped.
- Cooperate With the Police: While you have the right to remain silent, it is generally in your best interest to cooperate with the police to a certain extent. This includes providing your name and identification, as well as answering basic questions about your identity.
- Do Not Resist Arrest: If the police have a warrant for your arrest or probable cause to arrest you, you should not resist. Resisting arrest can lead to additional charges being filed against you.
- Request to Contact an Attorney Immediately: As soon as you have the opportunity, you should contact a reliable and experienced criminal defense attorney. An attorney can help protect your rights and advise you on the best course of action.
- Follow the Rules: While you are in custody, you should follow all rules and instructions given to you by law enforcement officials. This includes following orders while being booked and while in jail.
Steps to Take Immediately Following Your North Carolina Arrest
Whether you are still being held in custody or are awaiting a court date after your arrest in Lenoir, North Carolina, what you choose to do in this crucial time period will have a large impact on the outcome of your case. After an arrest in North Carolina, be sure to keep the following in mind:
- Keep Track of Court Dates and Deadlines: You will be summoned for an arraignment shortly after your arrest. At the arraignment, the charges against you will be presented, bail may be imposed, and future court dates will be arranged. Knowing these court dates is crucial to attending all necessary hearings and meeting any other deadlines imposed by the judge.
- Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent: When being held in custody or jail, the information that you share with officials or cellmates can later be held against you in court. Keep this in mind when sharing information with people. Also remember that conversations from jail with friends and family can also be recorded and used as evidence against you in court.
- Understand Your Charges: It is critical to be aware of the possible penalties you might incur if found guilty of the offense you are accused of having committed. A defendant’s prior criminal record and a sentencing range are used in North Carolina’s complex sentencing procedure to determine the punishment. When making crucial choices in your case and preparing for a conviction, it is helpful to talk with your lawyer to be aware of your prospective punishment.
- Follow Your Attorney’s Advice: Among the most important things you can do is to heed the counsel of your attorney. Their responsibility is to uphold your legal rights and put out the best possible defense against the allegations you are facing. By paying attention to what they say and then acting precisely as they instruct you to, you can prevent mistakes from weakening your defenses.
It is always best to hire a defense attorney who has years of experience and a history of defending their clients voraciously. They can help you navigate the arrest process and get you the most optimal case outcome possible.
Q: How much is a criminal defense attorney in North Carolina?
A: The cost of hiring a criminal defense attorney in North Carolina can vary depending on the complexity of the case, the attorney’s experience and reputation, and the location of the practice. In general, you can expect to pay anywhere from $500 to $1,500 or more per hour for the services of a criminal defense attorney in North Carolina. In some cases, attorneys may offer a flat fee for their services, but this is less common.
Q: What is the weakest defense in a criminal case?
A: The strength of any defense will depend on the specific facts and circumstances of the case. Some defenses that might be considered weaker in certain cases could include:
- Lack of Intent: This can be a weaker defense if there is strong evidence that the defendant acted with intent.
- Accident: A defense of an accident can be weaker if there is evidence that the defendant acted recklessly or negligently.
- Alibi: An alibi defense can be weaker if there is strong evidence placing the defendant at the scene of the crime.
- Duress: A defense of duress can be weaker if there is evidence that the defendant had a reasonable opportunity to escape or seek help.
Q: Are public defenders free in North Carolina?
A: In North Carolina, public defenders are provided at no cost to individuals who are charged with a crime and are unable to afford to hire a private attorney. If you are charged with a crime and cannot afford to hire an attorney, you may be eligible to have a public defender appointed to your case.
Q: What should I expect from a good criminal defense lawyer?
A: A good criminal defense lawyer should be able to do the following:
- Explain your rights and options to you.
- Advise you on the best course of action.
- Represent you in court.
- Keep you informed.
- Protect your rights.
Based on the circumstances of your case and your goals, your lawyer should be able to advise you on the best course of action. A good criminal defense lawyer should also be able to represent you effectively in court, whether through negotiation or by presenting a convincing case at trial.
Contact a Lenoir Criminal Defense Attorney
The criminal law attorneys at Helton, Cody & Associates, PLLC, a U.S. veteran-owned law firm, have been defending clients in court for over two decades. Contact our office in Lenoir today to discuss your criminal defense case with our defense attorneys and learn more about the strategies that can be used to help you obtain the best results before going into the courtroom.