What to Expect After Being Arrested in Montgomery County

Being arrested in Montgomery County is a terrifying experience. If you haven't been in this predicament before, the process can seem convoluted, making the situation even more difficult than it already is. But once you understand what to expect, you'll be able to get some peace of mind.

Before we get into the process, here are a couple of tips that are useful to consider at any point after an arrest:

Immediately contact an attorney. Failing to obtain the services of an experienced Montgomery County attorney at the earliest available time is risky. They can help you avoid mistakes and pitfalls that could potentially hinder a successful outcome in the long run.

Don't panic, you'll most likely be released. An arrest in Montgomery County doesn't guarantee that you'll have to remain in police custody. If you've been arrested for a misdemeanor or minor crime, you'll likely only be held until your information is obtained.

Don't say anything to law enforcement that you don't have to. You'll have to speak with law enforcement and investigators eventually. In these encounters it's important you don't say anything that could jeopardize your case, your attorney's defense, and ultimately your future. Don't be afraid to ask for your attorney's help prior to any kind of questioning.

The Criminal Prosecution Process

Following an arrest in Montgomery County, you'll be taken to the nearest police state in the county for processing. A criminal complaint will be filed and reviewed by the district justice. This complaint consists of your identity, your charges, and other relevant information.

Preliminary Hearing

Once the criminal complaint has been processed, a preliminary hearing will be scheduled shortly after. This hearing is an opportunity for the prosecution (the Commonwealth) to present sufficient enough evidence to justify putting you on trial. If a judge concludes that there is enough evidence to proceed, the case will progress to the next phase. If a judge decides that the evidence provided isn't enough, you will be discharged.

Arraignment

The next phase is a formal arraignment. At this phase, you'll be given a copy of the formal charging document and notified of your rights. But most importantly, you'll be asked to enter a plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. An attorney will advise you of the most suitable course of action.

Pre-trial

In this phase, a judge will be notified of the state of your case, and you'll get the chance to file pretrial motions. Some of these motions include a continuance, a request for discovery, severance or joinder and more.

Trial

A trial will either be held before a judge and a jury or solely before a judge. If you aren't familiar with the way in which a trial is conducted, here's a general order of events:

  1. Opening statements
  2. Presentation of prosecution's evidence
  3. Presentation of defense's evidence
  4. Closing arguments
  5. Verdict

Montgomery County Criminal Defense Attorney

If you've been arrested for the first time, you should consult with a Montgomery County criminal defense attorney to discuss your options. Attorney Joseph D. Lento has successfully represented numerous clients who've acquired misdemeanor and felony charges and has helped them get their sentence reduced, and their charges dismissed. For a case evaluation, contact him today online or by phone at (215) 535-5353.

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Attorney Joseph D. Lento has nearly a decade of experience successfully resolving clients' criminal charges in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania counties. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you or a loved one, contact the Lento Law Firm today! Criminal defense attorney Joseph D. Lento will go above and beyond the needs of any client, and will fight until the final bell rings.

This website was created only for general information purposes. It is not intended to be construed as legal advice for any situation. Only a direct consultation with a licensed Pennsylvania and New Jersey attorney can provide you with formal legal counsel based on the unique details surrounding your situation. The pages on this website may contain links and contact information for third party organizations – the Lento Law Firm does not necessarily endorse these organizations nor the materials contained on their website. In Pennsylvania, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout Pennsylvania's 67 counties, including, but not limited to Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Berks, Lancaster, Lehigh, and Northampton County. In New Jersey, attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New Jersey's 21 counties: Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren County, Outside of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, unless attorney Joseph D. Lento is admitted pro hac vice if needed, his assistance is educational advice, and does not constitute legal advice or the practice of law. The decision to hire an attorney in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania counties, New Jersey, or nationwide should not be made solely on the strength of an advertisement. We invite you to contact the Lento Law Firm directly to inquire about our specific qualifications and experience. Communicating with the Lento Law Firm by email, phone, or fax does not create an attorney-client relationship. The Lento Law Firm will serve as your official legal counsel upon a formal agreement from both parties. Any information sent to the Lento Law Firm before an attorney-client relationship is made is done on a non-confidential basis.

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