Frequently Asked Questions
Presented by a Las Vegas Criminal Defense Attorney
Why do I need to hire an attorney if I'm accused of a crime?
It is always advantageous to have an experienced professional handling
a legal matter, most especially if you have never been involved in the
criminal justice system before and know nothing about it. Even if you
have, you will want to minimize the adverse consequences that you may
be facing. You will also want to understand your legal rights and ensure
that they are protected. At each new stage of the criminal legal process,
new rights may come into play which your attorney will be aware of and
Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer at the Brown Law Offices can look at your case in detail and advise you
on your rights and your legal options. He can negotiate with prosecutors
to have charges reduced or dismissed. He can monitor the entire legal
process to ensure that you are treated fairly throughout.
I haven't been arrested yet. What are my rights?
You have the right to remain silent, which means that you will not incriminate
yourself. You also have the right to an attorney. If you are subject to
a criminal investigation, you should contact an experienced criminal defense
lawyer who can provide guidance and support in any law enforcement questioning.
What is a Grand Jury and what does it do?
The Grand Jury hears evidence and testimony to decide whether there is
enough incriminating evidence to continue the criminal legal process against
you. If there is, an indictment will follow which is the formal process
of charging you with a criminal offense. The Grand Jury does not decide
your guilt or innocence.
What does the prosecutor do?
A prosecutor is someone who represents the local, state or federal government
in bringing those accused of crimes to justice. A prosecutor may be called
a district attorney, county attorney, state attorney, or United States
attorney. He or she is charged with the duty of punishing those who violate
state or federal laws.
What does "certification" mean in a juvenile crime?
In some cases, usually very serious and violent ones, a juvenile may be
certified as an adult and tried as an adult in an adult criminal court
as opposed to a juvenile court. Juvenile courts focus primarily on rehabilitating
and guiding minors towards a better life as opposed to punishing them
as adult courts do. The law and procedure regarding certification to adult
status is very complex and is constantly changing. If your child is subject
to certification, you need an experienced attorney who is familiar with
this constantly evolving and complex area of the law. As a former prosecutor,
Phil Brown has handled hundreds of certifications on behalf of the State
How do police get a search warrant against me?
If the police suspect that a crime has been committed and they want to
search your property for evidence, they cannot do so without first obtaining
a search warrant. A judge will grant the police a search warrant if the
police have "probable cause" to believe that a crime has been
committed, but a skilled criminal defense attorney may be able to prove
that there wasn't probable cause. When this happens, the judge may
"suppress" the evidence so that it cannot be used against you.
What is the difference between jail and prison?
Contrary to popular belief, jail and prison are not the same thing in Nevada.
The jails in Nevada are administered by the local or county government
entities, but Nevada prisons are overseen by state government. The Nevada
Department of Corrections manages all of the prisons throughout the state
because there are no federal prisons in Nevada. Another key difference
between jail and prison is the length of time that inmates are held. Jails
are typically used to hold people who have been arrested, who are waiting
for trial, or who have been convicted of misdemeanor crimes with smaller
sentences. On the other hand, prison is used to house people who are accused
of the most serious crimes and felonies that result in sentences of a
year or more.
How does posting bail work in Nevada?
After you are arrested for a crime in Las Vegas, the police will take you
to the station for booking and an initial court appearance. From there,
you will typically be released if you can give the court an amount of
money that is established for "posting bail". In essence, you
are giving the court money and promising that you will show up to all
of your future court hearings. As a result, you will be free to leave
the jail. The more serious the crime, the higher the bail. If the crime
is very serious, the judge may not grant bail at all because the suspect
is considered a "flight risk". In this case, the suspect may
be kept in custody throughout the duration of the trial.
If you have further questions about criminal defense or about your case
contact the skilled
Las Vegas criminal defense attorney
at our offices now.