Gainesville Criminal Defense
If you have been arrested on suspicion of a crime in Gainesville, it is important to know that you have rights and protections under the law. The U.S. Constitution protects every individual’s right to a fair and speedy trial. Those who have been arrested are not required to talk to the police about the specifics of an incident. They are not required to answer questions without a defense lawyer present for help and guidance. In fact, it is highly advisable that you are polite, but do not go into details until you have your lawyer by your side. This is because whatever you say or do after your arrest can and will be used against you.
The experienced Gainesville criminal defense attorneys at Musca Law have a long and successful track record of defending all types of criminal cases in Alachua County and Gainesville. At Musca Law, our criminal defense lawyers handle all state and federal crimes, felonies and misdemeanors, including but not limited to:
- Fraud Offenses
- DUI or BUI
- Sex Crimes
- Drug Crimes
- Theft Crimes
- Violent Crimes
- Federal Crimes
- Traffic Offenses
- Weapons Offenses
- White Collar Crimes
- Probation Violations
Information About Gainesville
Hernando de Soto passed through Gainesville back in August of 1539. By the mid 1800s, Gainesville became home to the county jail and courthouse and was named the county seat. Gainesville is also the largest city in Alachua County. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, 124,354 people live in Gainesville. It is home to the University of Florida and the Florida Gators football team as well as Santa Fe College. Gainesville was ranked as one of the best places to live and play by National Geographic Adventure.
Gainesville Crime Statistics
The Gainesville Police Department is located on NW 8th Avenue. It is a fully accredited law enforcement agency. According to City-Data.com, Gainesville regularly has a crime rate index above state and national averages. In the year 2011, there were six murders, 82 rapes, 184 robberies, 640 assaults, 1,063 burglaries, 4,003 thefts, 290 auto thefts and three incidents of arson reported in Gainesville. Government databases show that 262 registered sex offenders currently live in Gainesville. This means that one out of every 400 residents in this city has been convicted of multiple sex offenses or of at least one felony sex crime.
Know Your Rights
One of the best ways to protect your rights following an arrest is to remain silent. The prosecution will attempt to use your words against you. So it is best to not say anything. Instead of answering questions or even engaging in conversation with the authorities, express, politely, your desire to remain silent until your attorney is by your side.
Your right to an attorney should not be taken for granted either. Even if you cannot afford to retain private counsel, a public defender will be provided for you. This, however, is not a desirable alternative because a public defender may have very little interest in your defense. A private Gainesville criminal defense attorney, however, will focus on your case and provide you with the specialized attention your case needs. Your lawyer can examine the evidence against you, determine if your rights were violated and devise a solid strategy to fight the charges in court.
Immediately Following Your Arrest
The events that typically occur within 48 hours of an arrest include booking, questioning, first appearance and bail procedures. During the booking, you will be fingerprinted, photographed and asked basic information regarding your name, age, occupation and address. Between the booking and questioning, you should be given an opportunity to make a phone call home or to a bondsman.
The first court appearance is the first stage of the criminal proceedings. In Florida, this happens within 24 hours of an arrest. You will be informed of the charges and questioned about your ability to hire a lawyer. All of these proceedings can be stressful, confusing and downright scary. Getting an experienced defense lawyer on your side can make that critical difference between a win and a loss.
Gainesville Criminal Defense Lawyers
At Musca Law, we understand that the stakes are high in every criminal defense case. Whether you are facing a misdemeanor or a felony charge, we know that every charge must be taken seriously because every criminal conviction comes with dire consequences including jail or prison time, fines and probation. If you or a loved one has been arrested on suspicion of a crime in Gainesville, please contact Musca Law for a free, comprehensive and confidential consultation.