What Can I Do if a Friend or Family Member is Arrested?

Being arrested in Union County, Linden, Westfield, Scotch Plains, or anywhere can be a scary experience not only for the one being arrested but for their family as well.  Being arrested can leave the family feeling frightened, confused, and wondering what to do next.

Given that most of us are not accustomed to dealing with the municipal courts, knowing how to proceed after an arrest can seem like a daunting task. A criminal conviction can have life-altering effects such as loss of freedom, employment and companionship and thus all arrests must be taken very seriously.  Having an effective and experienced attorney as an advocate can make all the difference.

First Steps after a Union County Criminal Arrest

The most recommended first step after being arrested, especially after a criminal arrest, is to speak with an attorney who is familiar with the local court. For example, if you are charged with a DUI in Westfield, you most likely will want to work with a DUI attorney familiar with the judges, prosecutors, and other officials of Westfield. This is not to say that your attorney can magically pull strings and have your charges dropped, rather that it is advantageous to have an attorney who understands how the judge works and how they typically manage their cases, how the prosecutor views and handles the offense you have been charged with, and how to best defend and represent your legal rights to these various parties.

Having a good lawyer representing you or your loved one after an arrest is the first step to peace of mind.

Elizabeth Arrest Lawyer Helps You and Family Members

An attorney knowledgeable in the municipality where your loved one was arrested will be an immediate benefit by:

  • Defending and explaining your loved one’s Constitutional rights.   A lawyer with experience will assure that no conversation will be held with their client without counsel present.  In addition, a good attorney will defend their client’s Fourth Amendment rights in regards to searches of car, home, or private possessions.
  • Securing an arraignment and bail hearing as well as acting as an advocate for the accused during these hearings.   New Jersey law mandates that bail and arraignment hearings take place within 48 hours of arrest.  The arraignment hearing will present formal criminal charges and the bail hearing will allow the attorney to present arguments for the release of your loved one for minimal or no bail.
  • Analyzing the police investigation and interviewing witnesses to determine what happened and prepare a legal defense against all allegations.  This could include hiring investigators on behalf of your loved one.
  • Performing negotiations on your loved one’s behalf.  Experienced attorneys understand what legal and factual arguments are most effective for any given situation. Many charges can be reduced or even dismissed with the help of a skilled lawyer.

The fear and uncertainty that the arrest of a loved one can cause cannot be understated. Even minor criminal charges can cause emotional trauma, mean significant fines, do damage to reputations, and/or result in time in jail. The earlier one has an effective advocate on one’s side the better the chances of receiving the best possible outcome. For this reason, contacting an attorney is the first and most important step in helping your loved one through this difficult and scary situation.

Roselle Park NJ DWI Defense Attorney

Attorney Edward Cooper has extensive experience arguing cases in the municipal courts of Cranford, Edison, Elizabeth, Garwood, Linden, Rahway, North Plainfield, Rosselle, Rosselle Park, and Union.  Let us put our experience to work for you. For a consultation about your criminal or motor vehicle case in municipal court, contact Attorney Cooper’s Linden offices anytime at 908-481-4625. Mr. Cooper will ensure that you have a complete understanding of the charges you are facing, as well as the appropriate next steps to successfully resolve your case.