After you are charged with a criminal offense, you will progress quickly through a criminal justice system that will seem bewildering and frustrating. If you are facing a misdemeanor or felony that does not include aggravated homicide, your charges will probably be considered “bondable.” That simply means that you will be given a chance to pay bail money to remain free pending your court date.

The Arraignment

The arraignment is the first hearing you will attend in the court system, where you will have the opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty to the formal charges the state is bringing against you. The clients of Tesmond Law have a Notice of Appearance, Plea of Not Guilty, Demand for Discovery and Demand for Trial by Jury entered on their behalf prior to the arraignment.  In most instances, this waives the client’s appearance at the arraignment proceeding.  The team at Tesmond Law works hard to present the client’s defense in advance of the arraignment and thereby influence the decision of which, if any, formal charges are entered by the State at the day of arraignment.  This early intervention prior to arraignment is akin to our lawyers stopping the system from running over a client, like stopping a freight train before it leaves the station.  This aggressive approach to defending clients prior to arraignment through our own investigation has resulted in countless victories for the firm.

Arthur Hearing

If you are being charged with a nonbondable offense, it means that you have been charged with a felony punishable by life in prison.  However, you are entitled to a special hearing to determine is bond is appropriate. This hearing is known as the Arthur Hearing. In the hearing, the burden of proof falls on the state to show that there is “proof evident/ presumption great” that the offense occurred and you committed the offense and should be held without bond.  The lawyers at Tesmond Law will challenge all evidence presented and will bring supporting evidence of strong ties to the community and lack of criminal record to show that you should not be held in custody and bail should be set.

At the conclusion of the hearing, the judge will decide whether you should be held on a nonbondable charge or set a bail amount.  The firm has had great success at Arthur Hearings and the majority of our clients are granted bail.

Nebbia Hearing

In many cases involving drug or financial offenses, the court may order a Nebbia Hearing to investigate the source of funds that will be used to pay your bond. This is especially the case when bail is substantially high and the court feels there is a chance that the money came from illegal drug sales or financial crimes. The Government and police have used this Nebbia requirement as a way to hold individuals in custody and prolong the release process.  The lawyers at Tesmond Law immediately begin preparation of a binder with all financial records relevant to those individuals or family members contributing to the bond.  The purpose of this early preparation of financial records is to show the government attorneys the bond funds are from legitimate sources and expedite the client’s release through a stipulation with the government that the funds are legitimate.  We have had great success with this early preparation and it has resulted in stipulations for bond in the majority of our cases, thereby saving our clients from unnecessarily waiting in jail for a hearing.

Should a formal Nebbia hearing be necessary, we will present significant evidence that the money was raised from legal resources, including expedited property appraisals, bank statements, pay stubs, tax records and testimony from the President of a reputable bonding company.

Don’t trust your freedom to inexperience. Talk to Joseph Tesmond as soon as possible after your arrest.