There are a number of ways that you may find out that you are facing criminal charges. In some cases, a detective may call you and ask you to turn yourself in. In others, the police or warrant unit may come looking for you at your home when you aren't there. Sometimes, you may be pulled over and arrested on a warrant as part of a traffic stop.
Regardless of how you find out, you need to know what is coming next. If you haven't been arrested yet but know you are facing a warrant, you need to turn yourself in. An experienced and respected attorney can negotiate a turn-in date with the assigned detective so that you have time to get your affairs in order and arrange for funds with which to make bail. An attorney can also make sure that the police do not try to question you to obtain incriminating statements.
After you turn yourself in, you will have a preliminary arraignment, and a magistrate or commissioner will set your initial bail. You will then be scheduled for a preliminary hearing or probable cause hearing. A preliminary hearing is your first chance to challenge the charges against you. At the preliminary hearing, the prosecutor or police have to show that it is more likely than not that a crime was committed that you did it. An aggressive criminal defense attorney may be able to knock out some or all of the charges at the preliminary hearing. Even if the charges cannot be dismissed at the preliminary hearing, the hearing can be used as discovery to advance any potential motions to suppress and other defenses that you may have at a later stage.
If you know that there is a warrant for your arrest or you are scheduled for a preliminary hearing, don't delay. Contact the Philadelphia criminal defense attorneys of Goldstein Mehta LLC immediately for a free consultation about your case.