Criminal Law Basics: An Introduction To Drug Charge Defense

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Should I Turn Myself In After Committing A Crime?

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After you have had a warrant issued for your arrest, you may wonder if you should turn yourself in. One option is to wait for the authorities to arrive and arrest you. However, you may decide to turn yourself in beforehand.

When to Not Turn Yourself In

You do not have to turn yourself in unless there are pending charges and you have a warrant for your arrest. For example, if you committed a crime and feel guilty, but the police do not have proof that you committed the crime, they won't have anything to hold you on and will simply not arrest you. 

How Arrest Warrants are Issued

If there is an arrest warrant, you will be notified by mail or telephone. If the police are unable to contact you in this manner, a friend or family member might be notified in your absence. In this case, you might be notified by him or her. 

When to Turn Yourself In

The best time to turn yourself in is on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. If you turn yourself in on a different day, you'll likely find yourself spending more time in the county jail before you may be released on bail.

Speaking with a Criminal Defense Attorney

Before turning yourself in, consider speaking with a criminal defense attorney. An attorney will guide you in how you should behave and what you should say as you turn yourself in to reduce the risk that you'll be prosecuted. If a bond is set, your criminal law attorney may help you lower the bond amount so you can more easily be bailed out of prison. 

Negotiating with the Courts

If you have not turned yourself in yet, the criminal defense attorney might be able to negotiate a deal where your arrest warrant is withdrawn. You may also be able to negotiate a reduction in your bail or a plea bargain. If you try to contact an attorney after you have been arrested, you'll have a difficult time contacting one afterward. 

When you are represented by a legal professional, the police are not able to question you. As a result, you won't be able to say something that may be used against you in court. Also, you'll need a lawyer to represent you in court later on and you'll have an easier time if the lawyer is with you from the beginning of your case. 

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