Inglewood Criminal Defense Attorney
If you have been charged with a criminal offense in Inglewood, California, make no mistake about it: you’re in trouble, even if you’re innocent. It doesn’t matter whether your charge is federal or state, as both justice systems are complex, brutal, and heartless. And society can be unforgiving when you try to get a job or rent an apartment with a criminal record.
You’ve got to start fighting back now, not later, and you’ll need an experienced criminal lawyer to help you fight effectively. The Inglewood criminal defense attorneys at The Rodriguez Law Group know how to handle prosecutions. You can contact us today by calling at (213) 995-6767 for a free consultation.
Our founding partner, Ambrosio E. Rodriguez, has over 20 years of experience, representing thousands of cases, to draw from. Some of these experiences come from his experience as a prosecutor, giving him the unique insight into “how the other side thinks” that other criminal defense attorneys lack.
We’re here to be on your side throughout the entirety of your case. Contact our law offices today to schedule a free consultation.
How The Rodriguez Law Group Can Help You Obtain the Best Possible Resolution of Your Criminal Charges
Yes, we have negotiated many favorable plea bargains for our clients. That is not enough by itself, though. Without a demonstrated ability to take a case to trial and win, the prosecution will be much less inclined to negotiate with you. We know what it takes to punch holes in the prosecution’s case—holes that might just be large enough for you to climb through, so to speak.
Here are some of the ways we can help you fight back against a seemingly monolithic justice system:
- Analyze police conduct for any violation of your constitutional rights. This could lead to the suppression of evidence against you.
- Seek a suppression hearing to eliminate any illegally obtained evidence.
- Challenge the credibility of the prosecution’s witnesses to expose inconsistencies or bias in their testimony.
- Explore alternative sentencing options to reduce your potential jail time. California prosecutors frequently offer diversion programs or community service as alternatives to incarceration.
- Investigate the background of the jurors to make sure they are not biased against you.
- Negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecution.
- Prepare you and coach you for courtroom appearances and testimony.
- Research legal precedents to build a strong defense strategy tailored to the specific facts of your case.
- Examine the prosecution’s evidence for weaknesses or procedural errors.
There might be hundreds of ways for us to help you, depending on the specific facts of your case. Contact our criminal defense lawyers in Inglewood, California, today for a free case review.
What’s the Difference Between a Misdemeanor and a Felony?
Misdemeanors are less serious crimes that carry penalties of one year or less in the country jail. First-offense DUI, prostitution, and petty theft are all examples of misdemeanors. Felonies are more serious crimes that can result in more than a year in prison (rape and murder, for example).
Some offenses are “wobblers,” meaning that the prosecutor can charge them as either misdemeanors or felonies. Certain crimes related to fraud or domestic violence operate as wobblers.
What Is an Arraignment?
Your arraignment is your first appearance in court after the statute charges you with a crime. It is at the arraignment that the state formally notifies you of the crime that the state is charging you with. In less serious cases, you can send your lawyer to your arraignment for you.
Do the Police Need a Warrant To Arrest Me?
Often, but not in all cases. An officer does not need a warrant to arrest you if you committed a crime in the officer’s presence, or if the officer has probable cause to believe you committed a felony.
What Are My Miranda Rights?
Anyone who watches TV has heard it before: ”You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you…” These are your Miranda rights.
Can I Walk Free if the Police Fail To “Read Me My Rights”?
Probably not. The consequences of failure to read you your rights are that the police cannot use anything you say as evidence against you. If you confess, for example, before the police read you your rights, the police will have to read you your rights and try to elicit a second confession out of you before they will be able to use your confession against you.
How Does Bail Work?
Suppose the police arrest you and throw you in jail. At that point, you have not been convicted of any crime – after all, you haven’t even been to trial. So what’s the justification for detaining you?
The justification is that the state needs a guarantee that you will show up for trial. Bail is an amount of money that is supposed to guarantee that. If you fail to show up for your next court date, you forfeit bail. The judge sets the amount of bail based on the facts of your case.
What Is an O.R. Release?
An O.R. release is a release from jail “on your Own Recognizance” prior to trial. Essentially, it is a release from jail with a bail of $0. Given the expenses of detaining prisoners, California allows O.R. release in less serious cases.
What Is the Three Strikes Law?
The “three strikes law” increases criminal penalties for repeat violent felony offenders. Sentence enhancement begins with the second serious violent felony offense. For a third serious violent felony offense, the penalty is 25 years to life in prison.
Does California Impose the Death Penalty?
It’s possible, at least technically. A California court can sentence you to death for certain kinds of aggravated homicide. In practice, however, California hasn’t executed anyone since 2006, and there is a moratorium in effect at the time of this writing.
How Does Plea Bargaining Work?
California court dockets are crowded. If courts had to try every defendant, they would quickly become overwhelmed with the volume of cases. Consequently, the great majority of criminal cases are resolved through plea bargaining.
In a plea bargain, you agree to plead guilty or no contest to a lesser charge or a more lenient sentence. Since you plead guilty, there is no need for a trial.
What Does It Mean To “Plead the Fifth”?
The Fifth Amendment to the US Constitution protects criminal defendants against compelled self-incrimination. Suppose the prosecutor puts you under oath, for example, and then asks, “Did you do it?” or some other question for which a truthful answer will be tantamount to confessing to a crime.
If you are guilty, this question puts you in a bad position, doesn’t it? If you say yes, you have just confessed under oath. If you say no, you have just lied under oath. If you simply refuse to answer, have you committed contempt of court? No, simply “take the Fifth,” and no court will charge you with contempt of court for refusing to answer such a question.
What Are Some Common Defenses Against Criminal Charges in Inglewood, California?
The prosecution must prove every element of your charges “beyond a reasonable doubt.” That’s the highest burden of proof standard in the law, giving an experienced attorney substantial room to respond.
Depending on the circumstances, common defenses against criminal charges include:
- Defense of others;
- Consent (a defense to rape but not a defense to murder, for example);
- Violation of your constitutional rights (the police illegally seized the evidence against you);
- Insanity (rarely used);
- Duress (someone forced you to do it);
- Mistake (you took the wrong bag from baggage claim at the airport, for example, and it had drugs in it).
These are just examples, and many more examples are possible. Alternatively, as mentioned above, you could simply claim that the prosecution’s evidence is insufficient to establish “guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”
What’s the Difference Between State and Federal Charges?
California applies its own criminal code, and so does the federal government. Since federal law applies everywhere in the United States, while you are in California, you are subject to both California criminal law and federal criminal law, and you can face charges under both. Drug crimes are an example of an area of criminal law where people commonly face federal charges.
Generally speaking, you face state charges in state court, and federal charges in federal court. If you are incarcerated, you will do time in California state prison for a state crime, and you will do time in federal prison (perhaps physically located in California) for a federal crime.
Will I Have To Register as a Sex Offender?
You might have to register as a sex offender if you are convicted of certain sex crimes. Both California and the federal government have instituted their own requirements. In most cases, however, you don’t have to register for life.
What Is an Expungement?
In an expungement, the court wipes clean all or a portion of your criminal record so that you can start all over again without a black mark on your record. California allows for the expungement of only certain crimes–you cannot expunge certain serious crimes.
Do I Need a Criminal Defense Attorney?
Yes, you do, if you are being charged with anything more serious than a traffic ticket – and you might even need an attorney then. The California criminal justice system is too complex, and the consequences of an error are too serious, for you to attempt to represent yourself. It is true that you have a constitutional right to represent yourself. Don’t exercise it.
Contact an Inglewood Criminal Defense Attorney To Discuss Your Options
We all know how unbelievably slow the government is when we want something from them. It’s exactly the opposite when they’re prosecuting you. Things are likely to move faster than you want them to, and you are going to have to respond in time. This is where the assistance of an experienced Inglewood criminal defense attorney comes in.
Contact us online or call our law offices to schedule a free consultation.