What To Do If You Are Arrested

What To Do If You Are Arrested

If ever you find yourself in a situation where a law officer takes you into custody then you must realize that you have been arrested. It is important for every citizen to know what to do if you are arrested and what their rights are.

If you are arrested, the officer concerned will take you to a police station, jail, or any other detention facility. Then you will be permitted to contact your attorney. They will in accordance with the law be obliged to tell you why you have been arrested.

Always ensure that your attorney is present when they photograph, you or take fingerprints of you, and if you are going to be produced before a magistrate for the official filing of charges. Be aware that you may be asked to participate in a line up, asked to give a sample of your handwriting, or provide samples of hair, blood, or urine.

If questioned you have a legal right to remain silent as anything you say may be used against you in a court of law. It is important for you to consult with your attorney before answering any questions and if you cannot afford an attorney the court will provide you with one.

When you are taken into custody the police will take your money and possessions like a watch, bracelet, or chain from you for safekeeping. You will receive a copy of the inventory and all things will be returned on your release.

Depending on the reason for arrest you may or may not be released on bail. Release on bail means your depositing cash or bail bond in court as a security against your release along with an assurance that you will appear in court when summoned. If you have a good standing in the community then the magistrate may reduce the bail or even waive it.

The thing to do is to stay clam, do not panic, and be polite and respectful towards the police officers and magistrates. Answer questions to the point. Try and remember what the arresting officers looked like, their badge numbers, license plate details and so on. Write things down as soon as you get a moment. You will benefit if there are bystanders watching. So encourage people to be present. Never act defiant or threaten about filing complaints.

Never issue statements in the belief that if you cooperate they will let you go. Always ensure that you think before you speak and that too in the presence of your attorney. In case you are arrested in a foreign country ask to contact your consulate or embassy immediately. Never sign any forms or documents until they are vetted by a competent attorney.

Never resist arrest even if you are innocent. Immediately provide your name, address, telephone number, immediate family contact details and the name of your employer. These will be essential to get bail.

Keep your wits about you and things will go well if you know what to do if you are arrested.

Criminal Records For Residents Of Michigan

Criminal Records For Residents Of Michigan

The State of Michigan keeps several different archives of information on criminal records. However, a minor problem is that majority of these sources of Michigan criminal records deal mostly with convictions. Criminal records for Michigan State do not necessarily warrant convictions. In fact, not all criminal records for Michigan result in convictions. And for this reason, databases maintained by the Michigan State Government may not be as comprehensive a source as we would like them to be. Therefore, it is advised that when you conduct a criminal records search, you do not use the state repository as your only source of information. There are also various other sources of Michigan criminal records that are rarely tapped into. These are the following:

State Police

As stated earlier, the most obvious choice for you to search for Michigan criminal records is the state repository. It is the Michigan State Police that maintains the official database of criminal history record information. Here you can find an archive of all Michigan criminal records of felonies or misdemeanors of a serious nature. The Michigan criminal records contained in the Michigan State Police database are actually fingerprint-based arrest records. By statute, law enforcement agencies and court clerks are required to create fingerprint cards for each record of arrest that are sent to the Michigan State Police. If the Michigan criminal records are not accompanied by fingerprint cards, then they will be included in the repository.

Department of Corrections

The Department of Corrections keeps a database of criminal records of everyone who has served time in prison. The Michigan criminal records stored here contain good details about the crime and the database even includes pictures of the criminal. The inclusion of photos are good for minimizing cases of mistaken identities wherein someone who is without a record may appear to have one because of names that are similar. The DOC database only contains criminal records of imprisonment and criminals who have been sentenced to prison do not show up here.

County Clerks of Court

Perhaps the most excellent way to verify whether a Michigan criminal action has been initiated against someone is to check whether there are criminal records of it in the Offices of the County Clerks of Court. Each court case is documented first by the Clerk of Court of the county where the case is to be heard. These documents are based on the information provided during the arrest incident.

Records of Arrests

Michigan criminal records of arrests at the county jail level are excellent sources, too, but they may not be as readily available as the others. However, there are some private sources that you can contract to legally provide you with these.

Michigan Protest Laws

Below you will find information on Michigan protest test laws, including an example of demonstration permit procedures for the city of Detroit. Not all cities in Michigan have the same requirements. Contact local city officials in the location you wish to protest to learn more.

Finally, you should always follow the lawful order of a peace officer while exercising your right to free speech.

Detroit

City Clerk’s Office

  • Apply for a Special Event Permit 60 days prior to the event
  • Pay fee

Unlawful Assembly State Code: Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.543

Failure to Disperse State Code: Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.523

30 Years ago today . . .


I took the Oath to become a Member of the Michigan State Bar.  My mentor, Ron Bretz motioned me into the bar.

Many have often heard me say, that  I am living the ultimate “hippy” dream.  Getting paid to  go up against “the man.” All kidding aside, every day I still wake up ready, willing, and able to be a shield for someone accused of wrongdoing by the government. For years, I have carried the Criminal Defense Attorney of Michigan’s (CDAM)  highest distinction-Constitutional Warrior. I have always brought a holistic approach to my practice. That means my clients and I will interact a lot (I pride myself on being accessible and have been answering my phone directly for years), looking for solutions outside of the case, to better themselves so they will not be on my docket again. As a very young man, I was exposed that we should do for others,  hence, my docket is full of appointed cases, I also have a daily spiritual practice that guides me.

I have met some of the best people in the world. My colleagues have become my friends and I have seen many of them become judges. I respect all the shareholders in the system and know they are human like me and us.

The pandemic has allowed me to have greater respect for this profession. I and my colleagues have gone the extra length for our clients. Doing this, as we, too, are suffering a great financial impact. I remain willing to go into a courtroom and jail (we see our clients behind glass in Macomb County) if called to do so. Because someone is sitting in a cell, and as an 18-year member of the Board of Directors for CDAM, I will resist any efforts to run contested confrontation hearings by remote technology. Specifically jury trials, I fight the voice inside that sometimes rears its head, causing doubts as to whether my practice is dying a slow death.  Way too many signs from the Universe to the contrary.

Thanks for being on this ride with me . . . 

Michigan CPL no longer Qualifies as NICS

On March 3, 2020, the United States Department of Justice Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) determined that the Michigan Concealed Pistol License (CPL) no longer qualifies as a National Instant Criminal Background Check (NICS) alternative permit for possessing and transporting firearms.

Read more here: https://www.michigan.gov/msp/0,4643,7-123-1878_1591_3503_4654—,00.html

How Does a Criminal Defense Lawyer Do Their Job

How does a criminal defense Lawyer do their job

How does a criminal defense lawyer do their job; well everyone is entitled to have their day in court. This means that even if the client is guilty, the criminal defense lawyer must do whatever is necessary so that person will not be convicted of the crime.

How does that work? If you are a public defender, the client will be appointed and you have to meet with them. Before this person is arraigned in court, you will have time to discuss what will be their plea which will then be presented to the judge. Afterward, ample time will be given so you can conduct an investigation, review police reports, and examine the evidence to prepare you for trial.

During the trial, both sides will be able to present witnesses. Some of these are experts and after the prosecution questions this person on the stand, you will have the chance to cross-examine them and vice versa.

Before the trial starts or even during, you can try to settle this matter out of court. You have the right to accept or turn it down but you must first discuss this with your client.

When all the witnesses have spoken and the evidence has been presented, the only thing you have to work on now is your closing argument. You should summarize everything that has happened in front of the jury because the prosecution will do the same so the jury can now go to the jury room and make their decision.

How long will the jury will be deliberating is anyone’s guess. Sometimes a verdict will be announced in less than an hour while others will take longer. When the jury has returned, you will know if the jury has reached a guilty or not guilty verdict.

If the verdict is guilty, then you can appeal the decision to the higher court. If the verdict is not guilty, then your client can walk out of the courtroom as a free man.

The same thing happens when you are working for or have your own criminal defense law firm. The only difference is that clients will go up to you. When they walk in, they will want to interview you first to find out a little about you.

You should be ready to answer questions such as how long have you been a criminal defense attorney, how many cases have you won, do you go to trial often or decide to settle this matter out of court, and so on. How you answer will help them decide if they want to hire you or not.

Another difference between those who operate privately is that you can charge a certain fee for your legal services. You can charge a flat fee or on an hourly basis. This depends on you.

If you are handling a lot of cases right now, be honest with the client and tell them you can’t because you will not be able to represent them to the fullest of your ability in that condition.

So how do you a criminal defense attorney do their job? By operating on the assumption that anyone who is arrested is innocent until proven guilty. This is hard especially if you know your client did it but this is your duty as a public defender. You failed to do so will mean this person will spend the rest of their time in jail.

How to Find a Michigan Criminal Defense Lawyer

How to Find a Michigan Criminal Defense Lawyer

How to find a Michigan Criminal Defense Lawyer, when you are arrested for a crime, is a proven criminal defense attorney that will fight for your rights. You can choose who wants to represent you which shouldn’t be a problem if you have money but if you don’t, you will have to settle with whoever the court appoints for you. But for those who can hire one, here are a few tips to help you select a professional.

First, when you meet the criminal defense lawyer, you should ask how long has he or she been practicing criminal law and also how many cases did they win. Surely you don’t want to work with a lawyer who is fresh out of college or has never won a case. You also don’t want to work with someone who chooses to settle the matter out of court very often because you will probably get the shorter end of the stick when you decide to go for the plea bargain.

The more years of experience this person has, the better because this professional should already know the ins and outs of the judicial system. That person may have already dealt with the prosecution in the past and knows how to get a winning verdict.

You should also check if the lawyer that is representing you is a certified Michigan criminal defense lawyer. This will save you the time of asking how long this person has been in the practice because getting such recognition means you have actively participated in 100+ cases involving the taking of testimony.

Naturally, you have to be comfortable with the criminal defense lawyer who will be representing you in the case. He or she should be able to give you updates like when is the trial, what strategy will be used during trial and other matters that may help make the outcome go in your favor.

Since you are already in your office, be sure that the criminal defense lawyer you are speaking with will be the one who will actually defending you and not handed over to another person in the firm.

Given that the practice of criminal defense work is their bread and butter, you should also discuss the fee arrangements. Some lawyers charge a flat fee while others do it on an hourly basis. It is better to get a flat fee so you are not charged every time you have to consult your lawyer over the phone or in person. You should also find out if this already covers the case should this go to trial.

While the criminal defense lawyer will do their share to maintain your innocence, you should also do your share so this can happen. You do this by cooperating with them so they will be able to come up with a good defense.

The best criminal defense lawyer to get is the one who is experienced. After all, a criminal trial may last weeks or even months before a verdict is reached. This may cost you a great amount of money but if you get a not guilty verdict from the jury, it is surely worth every penny so you can move on with your life instead of spending the rest of it behind bars.

What A Michigan Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Do For You

Michigan Criminal Defense Lawyer

If you are accused of a crime in Michigan, the only person that can help you out is a Michigan criminal defense lawyer. This is because you are not familiar with how the judiciary system works which makes it hard for you to represent yourself in open court.

This is because a lot of the legal rules are hidden away in court interpretations of federal and state constitutions. A good example is whether or not the search of your home was reasonable. It can only be considered a good search if the police obtained a warrant otherwise anything found is not admissible in court.

Given that the Michigan criminal defense lawyer has crossed swords with the prosecution in the past, they are already familiar with the tactics that the opposing party will be using and be prepared for it.

As you can see, it is a very specialized field and there are many things that need to be checked out by your criminal defense lawyer before you are given a guilty or not guilty verdict.

When your case has been given to them, you will be asked what happened. You will have to give your version of the events that took place. After listening, they will provide you with a reality check especially what will happen should the case go to trial.

They will then review the police report, interview witnesses and examine the evidence. Since it is hard to look at everything on their own, they sometimes have researchers do it.

When you are arraigned in court, you are required to submit a plea. You could plead guilty or not guilty while some do not give one yet and then prepare for the trial date.

If the evidence against you is overwhelming, perhaps your criminal defense lawyer can negotiate so you can get a lighter sentence or reduced charges. This can only happen if this is your first time or you have a criminal record and you have something to trade.

For those who want to go to trail, the Michigan criminal defense lawyer will now prepare your defense. This may sometimes mean taking up your stand and telling the court the events that took place. This may be risky so before hand, you will be briefed on what to say.

Witnesses will be presented. Some of these people will be able to aid in your defense while others will be against you so another job that the criminal defense lawyer will do is cross examine them in order to cast doubt in the testimony they are giving.

The trial is almost over when the criminal defense lawyer and the prosecution give their closing arguments. The jury will then be given time to deliberate the case so you will know the verdict when they come back into the court and read it.

If you get a not guilty verdict, the Michigan criminal defense attorney was able to do their job since you are a free man. But if you are guilty, then the next step is to appeal the decision to a higher court and hopefully, they will overturn that decision.

Our justice system works, because everyone has a right to counsel and tried before their peers.