What Happens Within The First 24 Hours Of My Arrest?
After your arrest, you’ll be taken to the police station or county jail and booked. The booking process creates an official arrest record and can take several hours. The typical booking process includes:
- Recording your name and the crime you’ve been arrested for
- Taking a mug shot
- Taking fingerprints
- Surrendering your clothing and personal belongings for evidence or to be held until your release
- Full body search
- Check for outstanding warrants in your name
- Health screening
- Background and demographic information about you
Getting out of jail will probably be the first thing on your mind, and bond (or bail) allows you to do so. Within 24-48 hours, you will usually have a bond hearing.
It is important to contact an attorney immediately to help you at this hearing. A judge will listen to the facts of your case and decide whether or not you can be released from jail along with the financial cost of such release. If you can, you’ll have to provide bail. Bond is the money or property you provide to ensure you will show up in court for your hearing. The judge sets this amount, which can be paid by you, a relative, friend, or professional bondsman (which require a fee).
Bond hearings are not the time to argue your case. You should not make any statements or answer any questions about your charges at your bond hearing – the proceeding is sole to determine whether you are a flight risk or a danger to the community and to set a bond amount that will ensure your return to court.
While you’re out on bond, you must comply with the bail conditions the judge sets. Additionally, you must show up to court on the date assigned. Failure to appear in court will result in the judge issuing a warrant for your arrest.
What Rights Do I Have After I Am Arrested?
At any point in the booking process, you have the right to not answer questions or to ask for an attorney. If you waive these rights or make statements, it is important to understand that anything you say can be used against you once you get to court.
During the booking process, think “name, rank, and serial number.” You should answer questions about who you are, where you live, and what your contact information is. You should not answer any questions about the allegations against you and you should not engage in “small talk.”
An officer cannot legally force you or threaten you to admit guilt. They also do not have the power to make promises to help you in court. Your best bet is to contact an attorney and let them advise you before you make any statements or answer any questions.
Will I Be Arraigned Before I Am Released From Jail?
While South Carolina state criminal courts typically do not have “arraignments”, you will be given your rights and told what charges you are facing at the bond hearing by the bond judge.
At What Point Can I And Should I Contact An Attorney?
The short answer is as soon as possible. If you have a family member or friend who can contact an attorney while you are in jail, you should have them do so.
In A DUI Arrest, Can I Contact An Attorney Before Taking The Breath Or Blood Test?
In South Carolina, there is no right to a telephone call before being offered the breath or blood test during a DUI arrest.
Once I Am Out Of Jail, How Do I Know What To Do Next?
Once you are out of jail, contact an experienced, skilled criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. They will be able to explain everything to you and what to expect from here on out. Upon release from jail, you should be provided with some basic paperwork for your case, such as a copy of the arrest warrant, ticket information, bond paperwork, and a record of your belongings. You may also be given paperwork on future court dates and your preliminary hearing.
For more information on Aftermath Of An Arrest In South Carolina, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (843) 856-2222 today.