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Criminal Defense FAQs

criminal process and the charges that you’re facing. Here’s are the FAQs about your criminal defense in New York:

Am I convicted just because I’m charged with a crime?

No, you are not convicted of a crime simply because you’re charged with a crime. If you’re arrested or otherwise brought to court to answer for allegations of a crime, you’re presumed innocent until the case resolves either through a plea, dismissal or jury verdict. The police alone do not have the authority to convict someone of a crime. You have a right to defend yourself aggressively when you face New York criminal charges.

How do I get out of jail after I’m charged with a crime in New York?

You get out of jail by posting a bond or bail amount and complying with the terms of bond. In most cases, the court makes you post an amount of bond as a guarantee that you’re going to appear at future court proceedings. The amount of bond generally depends on the severity of the case, but you may be able to influence the amount by telling the judge that you have ties to the community and employment to maintain while you await developments in the case. There may also be other conditions of bond to address like drug testing requirements or requirements to avoid certain people or locations.

What defenses are available in my criminal defense case?

The defenses that you should assert in your criminal defense case depend on the exact circumstances. Not every defense applies in every case. Here are some criminal defenses that you might use in your case:
  • Witnesses did not have a good vantage point to see or hear what happened
  • Witnesses may be mistaken
  • Witnesses may have biases that influence their testimony
  • The police violated your rights when they went about the investigation
  • The police failed to follow procedures when they investigated your claim
  • Improper handling of evidence
  • Necessity; prevention of a more serious harm
  • Self-defense
  • Someone else threatens you into taking certain actions
  • Mistake of fact
  • Entrapment
There are different ways to assert each defense. The exact facts and legal arguments to present in your case are specific to the entire circumstances that are present and the defenses that are viable in your case. It’s important to begin building your defenses as soon as you’re aware that you’re facing charges.

What are the possible penalties for a criminal offense in New York State?

An offense may be a misdemeanor or a felony. A felony has a maximum possible punishment of more than one year in state prison. A misdemeanor has a maximum possible punishment of up to one year in jail. The judge has discretion for how much jail time they sentence someone to serve if they’re convicted of a crime. Here are some of the possible penalties that you can face if you’re convicted of a crime:
  • Jail time
  • Probation
  • Fines
  • Restitution
  • Court costs
  • Alcohol and drug assessments
  • Court-ordered counseling
  • Drug and alcohol monitoring
  • Loss of your driver’s license
  • Any other reasonable penalty or rehabilitative program
There may be collateral consequences to a criminal conviction that you should also carefully consider. You may lose your job, occupational license or legal immigration status. A trained New York criminal defense attorney can help you understand all of the possible consequences so that your decisions are informed.

What can I do to fight the criminal charges in my case?

To fight the criminal charges in your case, it’s important to address each aspect of the case as it arises. As soon as you’re arrested, you need to begin preparing how you’re going to respond. Beginning preparation early can be critical to ensuring that you prepare a strong defense that includes challenging the state’s case and demonstrating why you deserve consideration from the state’s attorney.]]>


With 100 years of combined experience, Raiser & Kenniff, is the place to turn when you or a loved one are accused of a crime. When the media needs professional and accurate legal insight on criminal cases in the national spotlight they turn to Raiser & Kenniff.


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