Frequently Asked Questions
Attorneys Based in Monroe & Serving Walton & Clarke Counties
When you need a dependable Gwinnett County criminal defense lawyer on your side, count on the team at Crawford and Boyle, LLC, to help you get the representation you need. Whether you face criminal charges or a challenging family situation, we are here to help you fight for your interests. By calling and getting started on your case, you increase your chances at a favorable outcome.
Below we’ve listed some answers to common questions we hear from clients. For more information, simply contact our firm and schedule a free consultation.
Do I need a criminal lawyer?
Being charged with a crime can seriously affect a person’s life, and being convicted can devastate it. When someone is arrested for a criminal offense, they should retain representation right away. By implementing the correct legal strategy early on, you can better defend your rights. At Crawford and Boyle, LLC, you can expect personalized service and dedicated legal representation.
Should I speak with the police to prove that I am innocent?
A person’s first action after being arrested should be to contact an experienced local criminal lawyer. These are frightening experiences, and you may not be sure what to do. By remaining calm and, most importantly, silent, you can protect your inalienable rights to protect against self-incrimination. However, police will still try and collect any evidence or statements they can get from you if you agree to talk without an attorney present.
How will prosecutors bring charges against me?
Prosecutors will go to great lengths to paint you as a dangerous villain who should not be let back into the public. As former prosecutors, Eric Crawford and David Boyle are well aware of the procedures being undertaken by law enforcement to gain a conviction. With their unique insight into the workings of the prosecution, they can mount a well-prepared defense that protects their clients’ interests.
Is my innocence at stake if I was accused of a violent crime I didn’t commit?
Yes. Law enforcement spends most of their resources on violent crime investigations as opposed to other less serious crimes. If you were charged with a violent crime, you must take it seriously. Our team at Crawford and Boyle, LLC, can begin our own in-depth investigation of the facts and evidence being brought against you. We can establish challenges to any evidence brought against you and mount an aggressive and vigorous defense on your behalf.
Why should I hire an attorney instead of retaining one for free?
If a person allows his legal representation to be a public defender or someone less qualified, the consequences can be disastrous. While public defenders may have their clients’ interests at heart, they likely lack the experience and time it takes to present an effective defense. Get the dedicated and skilled legal representation you need when facing violent crime charges. Contact Crawford and Boyle, LLC, right away.
When can I be charged with a crime?
The criminal process begins with a stop or an arrest. It could end at any point up to the time of sentencing, depending on the facts and circumstances of any particular case. You have certain rights at every stage of the criminal process. If you are stopped by a police officer but not arrested, you do not have to answer any questions that the police officer asks you. They may ask to search you or your vehicle, but they cannot do so without your consent unless they have probable cause.
You cannot challenge the existence of probable cause until later. Therefore, you should tell the police officer that you do not consent to a search of your vehicle. The police officer may perform a search anyway, but if it is later determined that there was no probable cause, at least you won’t have consented to the search. The police officer could decide at this point that there is no reason to arrest you and your involvement in the criminal process could end here.
What should I do if I am arrested?
When you are placed under arrest, the police must inform you of your constitutional rights. This includes your right to remain silent and your right to obtain the advice of an attorney. When you are arrested, you should be given an opportunity to contact a lawyer or anyone else you want to let know what has happened to you. You are not limited to a single call. Once you are arrested there is a limited amount of time before you must either be charged with a crime or released. If you have been held for an unreasonable amount of time without being charged, your attorney can ask a judge to order your release.
Will my case go to trial?
If you enter a plea of no contest or of guilty, there will not be a trial. In this situation, you will either be sentenced immediately or sentenced at a later time. If you are to be sentenced at some point in the future, the judge will determine whether you should be held in custody until sentencing or whether you should be released and ordered to appear for sentencing.
If you entered a not guilty plea you will have a trial. At the end of your trial, if you are found not guilty, you will be free to go, and, for you, the criminal process will end at that point. If you are found guilty, you will go through the sentencing process as described above.
Do I need a family lawyer?
Going through the divorce process may be one of the most difficult times in one’s life. Often, emotions are running high and difficult decisions must be made. Most often questions arise with regard to the division of assets, child custody, child support, and visitation. The outcome of these decisions has not only an immediate impact on one’s life but also can determine the quality of living for many years to come. An experienced divorce attorney can help a husband or wife currently considering or going through a divorce to understand his or her rights and obligations.