What Happens In The First 24 Hours After An Arrest?
In the first 24 hours after an arrest for DWI or domestic violence in New York, you may be held overnight in a local facility. If the sheriff department makes the arrest, then you will go to Riverhead on Long Island in Suffolk County and will appear before a judge the following day. You will go to the main courthouse or one of the local criminal courthouses in New York City or Nassau County. Before speaking with a judge, you will probably speak with a probation department representative who will verify some things about you so that they can come up with a report or a score for the judge. This is a very important part of the arrest process because the judge will not know anything about you. The probation department serves the purpose of gathering information about you and presenting it to the judge so that they feel more comfortable with releasing you or setting a low amount of bail.
I recommend that you have your spouse or other loved one pay attention to their cell phone and pick up any call that comes in as a blocked number because that will usually be the probation department calling from the court to confirm the information that was provided. You will get more points if the probation department can confirm the information. Once that happens, the report goes to the judge and so will you. The judge will then take a look at all of the paperwork and the charges in order to determine whether or not you are a flight risk, which is how bail gets determined. They take into account such things as prior arrests, prior convictions, prior histories of non-appearances, and warrants that may have been issued. The judge will also take into account the nature and the severity of the charges.
At that stage, it is important to have an attorney representing you in some way, preferably one who has been privately retained and has spoken with your family in order to understand the family dynamic. Your attorney may even be able to reach out to the police department or detectives to start an investigation or at least gain a better understanding about how to present your willingness to come back to court; doing so may encourage the judge to set a low amount of bail (or none at all). The judge will then make a determination and you will either be released or stay until bail can be posted. Sometimes, the bail amount is set so high that it cannot be posted and you will be given a court date. That court appearance would take place a couple of days later and the judge would reassess your bail at that time.
What Are My Rights After I Have Been Arrested?
After you have been arrested, you have the right to remain silent. However, the police do not have to tell you about that essential right until after they put you in custody. That custody line is determined by the court way after the fact. The statements that you make to an officer after having been pulled over could be used against you in court, and you would not have any notice of it because the police will not have read you, your right to remain silent (also known as the Miranda warning). You need to understand that regardless of the circumstances, you always have the right to remain silent. Furthermore, you need to exercise that right. You do not need a police officer to tell you when that is going to trigger because by the time they do, it will be too late and they will already be making the arrest. Officers can gather enough evidence to arrest you just from the statements you might make.
You also have the right to speak to an attorney, although the ability to do so may be limited by the fact that you are in handcuffs. Oftentimes, the police will not give you an opportunity to speak to an attorney until way later in the arrest process. I implore you to avoid speaking to the police about anything until you have spoken to an attorney, especially in a DWI case. For example, if you want to know whether or not to take a breath test and you ask for an attorney, the police must inform you that either one is available to you or not available to you, or how to go about obtaining one before they can write you up as a refusal. That is a very important part of a DWI arrest. If you remain silent and you do not speak to the police, then the worst-case scenario in New York is that you are going to see a judge the next morning. If you start talking to the police, then the worst-case scenario is that you are going to be waiving your right to remain silent and they are going to use whatever they have against you in court. So, it is important to remain silent.
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