To understand what will really happen at your domestic violence arraignment, you must first understand what an arraignment is and how it applies to your case. An arraignment is like a hearing where the court will formally charge you with the crime that you are being accused of. At the arraignment you will officially hear what crimes you are being charged with, that you have a right to an attorney, and have bail set for you. You will also, most importantly, be able to plead guilty or not guilty. Many of the most common California domestic violence violations fall under Penal Code 273.5, Penal Code 243, and Penal Code 273D.
One of your biggest worries at a domestic violence arraignment is the entrance of a protective order. If the plaintiff in your case brings a protective order and is successful, this could restrict you from staying in your own home immediately after your arrest. This means that you could be left without the important functions in your day-to-day life, such as having a change of clothing or other important items that you need everyday. You may be placed in an extremely difficult situation, which is why it is especially helpful to have a defense attorney on your side.
What Plea Should I Enter?
At the arraignment, one of the most important decisions is either entering a plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. The first two are self-explanatory, but no-contest means that you are not personally admitting guilt but will not contest the charges. Before your arraignment, you will speak to your attorney and make an agreement in exchange for something from the prosecuting attorney that will be beneficial to your case.
If you have been accused of domestic violence, it is always important to have a lawyer on your side to help you during your vital case. Many people who have been charged with misdemeanors will not attend their arraignment; however, many domestic violence crimes can carry felony sentences and this is why it is important to be prepared. Call us today to talk to an attorney who understands your case in full so you can arrive at the best outcome.