YOUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO LEGAL COUNSEL
The right to counsel goes beyond the Fifth Amendment right to have an attorney present during an interrogation. The Sixth Amendment also provides the right to counsel when there is a judicial proceeding against the defendant on a formal charge. It is important for you to be familiar with your constitutional rights. Every defendant is entitled to them.
A defendant goes through a whole legal procedure even before the trial begins. There may be a filing of information, an indictment, an arraignment or a preliminary hearing. At all stages of these judicial proceedings, a defendant should have an attorney present to raise proper objections. Even attorneys hire other attorneys to help in a defense because it is always better to have an emotionally objective lawyer representing your interests.
Further, an attorney with experience and knowledge can understand the most effective ways to challenge a criminal charge. There is a reason the Constitution provides defendants the opportunity to have an attorney. It wants to ensure that defendants are innocent until they are proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
It is also important to have representation during these pretrial proceedings because you will have the opportunity to dismiss the case before a jury is sworn in. California provides several ways to challenge a criminal charge before the case is even set for trial. For example, you can move the court to set aside the information. Further, defense counsel can move the judge to exclude certain evidence, which would make it much more difficult for the prosecution to proceed with its case.
Any criminal charge, felony or misdemeanor, could potentially have lifelong consequences. Do not hesitate to contact my firm, the Law Offices of C.W. Blaylock, to represent you at every stage of a criminal charge. I am Chris W. Blaylock, a criminal defense lawyer in Santa Monica who represents clients in Los Angeles and Ventura counties. You have the right to an attorney, so do not forget to use that right.