What are my rights when I am under arrest?
Under the 5th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, you have the right to avoid self-incrimination by remaining silent following your detention or arrest. You are also entitled to a phone call and to legal representation. If you cannot afford to hire a criminal defense attorney, the State of South Carolina will appoint a public defender on your behalf.
What should I do if I’ve been arrested for a crime?
You should use the one phone call which you are permitted to contact a dedicated South Carolina criminal defense attorney as soon possible. You should also not make any statements to law enforcement officials unless you are advised to do so by your criminal defense lawyer. Remember: anything you say can be used against you at an arraignment or in a trial.
What consequences can I expect following a conviction for a misdemeanor or felony in the State of South Carolina?
Prison time and expensive fines are only the most obvious consequences of a criminal conviction in South Carolina. Depending on the circumstances of your crime, you may also be required to pay restitution, to attend counseling for drug or alcohol abuse or anger management, or perform community service.
When should I hire a criminal defense lawyer?
You should retain a knowledgeable South Carolina defense lawyer as soon as you have been charged or think you will be charged with a crime. Procrastination in doing so only weakens your defense and helps prosecutors convict you. Contact a dedicated criminal defense attorney today if you have been arrested in the State of South Carolina.