If you think you may be charged with a crime or have been charged with a crime, what actions you take next could have a great impact on how your case will be resolved. It’s important to have an experienced criminal lawyer to guide you through the process to ensure that your rights are protected. With former prosecutors from the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office on staff at Dyer Bregman Ferris Wong & Carter, PLLC, we know how to evaluate the evidence that the State has gathered against you and determine the strength of the State’s case and your possible defenses.
We represent people who are charged with the following types of criminal cases:
- Drug offenses
- Property crimes
- Underage possession/consumption of alcohol
- Criminal and civil traffic violations
- City code violations
- Misdemeanor offenses
- Juvenile crimes
We also represent people who think they may be charged with a crime in the future. This is often known as pre-indictment representation. We have often been contacted by individuals who have told us that they are being investigated for a crime and the police want to meet with them so they get their “side of the story”. Our first words of advice – Don’t do it! There is a reason why the words “you have the right to remain silent, anything you say can and will be used against you” are so important. It’s because those words ring true whether you have been arrested or not. What you think may be a defense or explanation to the police may end up looking like a confession.
Having an attorney who represents you in this situation provides you with protection against direct contact with the police. An attorney can quickly provide notice to the police that you are represented and that all contact from the police must go through your attorney first.
If you have already been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony offense, you should seriously think about having the conviction set-aside and dismissed (more commonly known as “expunged”) so that employment will not be difficult to obtain. As the number of jobs available grows smaller and the population of available workers grows larger, employers can afford to be more selective about whom to hire.
Arizona does not have a process to have criminal convictions “expunged” where your criminal court records are sealed or removed from public accessibility. However, we do have a process called, “Setting Aside the Judgment of Guilt”. By having your conviction set aside and dismissed, it may not show up on a private background check report that only provides reports of convictions or it may show that your charge was “dismissed”. Having your conviction set aside may open up employment options available to you that you never had before.