Think of the arraignment as the starting line of a marathon. Sometimes the arraignment is a formal hearing where the Judge, or your lawyer, will explain the allegations to you along with the potential penalties. Other times the parties will simply file paperwork with the court telling the court you plead Not Guilty.
Attorneys always advise their clients to plead Not Guilty even when one’s guilt may seem overwhelming. In the days and weeks that follow the Not Guilty Plea the lawyer will obtain all the police reports, conduct a thorough investigation, speak with the prosecutor and otherwise prepare your case for trial. Your attorney may file Motions to Suppress (kick out evidence) or Motions to Dismiss depending upon the unique situation your case presents.
In the end you’ll be thankful that you entered a plea of Not Guilty. A good lawyer will develop defenses, file motions on your behalf and otherwise prepare for trial. As the case progresses a light at the end of the tunnel grows brighter and brighter. What at first seemed like an untenable situation is often made better with the help of an experienced criminal defense lawyer.
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