When you’re arrested for the first time, criminal court can feel pretty intimidating. You’re not sure what to expect, and your future is on the line. A misdemeanor or felony charge can haunt you for years after your case, so you’ll need to be ready for your case.
So, what can you expect during your day in court? Your lawyer will walk you through your case and the specific details of your case, but if you’re concerned about your day in criminal court, keep in mind that the typical day in criminal court might look something like this.
Before Your Trial
You probably have already gone through the arraignment process, which means that your criminal charges have been read to you and you’ve pleaded not guilty. Now, it’s time to appear in court, but you and your lawyer might have to prepare a few things first.
Before the trial, the lawyers will select a jury, which gives them a chance to question them before the trial begins. This is to seek out any signs of bias among the jurors, so that they have a fair group to choose from. Once this process is over, your trial should be ready to begin.
Before the testifying and other statements begin, your day in criminal court should get going during the opening statements. This gives both sides a chance to deliver a few statements about the case and their thoughts.
As such, your lawyer might start your case by talking briefly about why you’re not guilty, which is important. By delivering a good opening statement, your lawyer has a chance to reach out to the jurors and change any initial impressions they may have about you. Once these opening statements have closed, the testifying begins.
Testifying for Your Case
The testifying process is what most of us think of when we think of a trial: this is the point where both sides present their cases and any evidence for or against you. Both sides might use any of the following types of evidence:
- Physical evidence
- Expert witnesses
These witnesses will talk about what they saw, or an expert witness might be brought in to discuss why you couldn’t have been guilty of the offenses you’re accused of. For example, let’s say you were charged with a DUI. Your lawyer might bring in an expert witness to question the usefulness of the field sobriety tests and show why they could be wrong or calibrated incorrectly.
Wrapping Up Your Trial
Once the lawyers have had a chance to present all their evidence, they’ll make their closing statements before the final verdict is made. You’ll be found guilty or not guilty, and you’ll either receive the sentence for your offenses, or your charges will be dropped, and you’ll be let go.
However, with a lawyer on your side, you’ll have a better chance of dropped charges. So, if you’re heading to court, go to criminal court defended by a lawyer. Their expertise can help you through your day in criminal court and help you get your charges dropped.