If you or your loved one is facing any sort of criminal charges, then it is high time you get to know about criminal charges, how to file a criminal charge and other important aspects in detail. It is necessary that everyone posses the knowledge and understanding about the process of criminal case from the start.
What is a criminal charge?
A criminal charge is nothing but accusation made by authorities authorized by the government over those who have committed any sort of crime punishable under law. It is a form of written accusation posted against someone for doing an act or refraining from doing something put-forth by law. A criminal charge would be initiated if someone files a criminal case against a person. It could be the police or the victim of the specific problem.
When a person faces arrest
The police have the authority to arrest somebody if they have any sort of suspicion that the concerned person has committed a crime. A criminal offense could be major or minor and the police have the right to arrest them to carry on with further investigation. If the police finds substantial reason that the concerned person could have committed the crime after the investigation then the police would initiate further action. The next step to this would be to get warrant to initiate search and arrest.
Filing of charge
Not all arrests would end up with a charge being filed against the person. The prosecutor would review each and everything in detail and comes to a conclusion if a charge should be filed or not. In case, the chances are high that a charge would be filed against you after the arrest, it serves best to seek the help of a criminal defense attorney for professional support. The attorney would deal with any legal issues and would talk to the prosecutor before the filing of charges. A charge document comprises of several important legal documents which includes information, complaint, citation, traffic ticket and indictment.
Filing of a complaint
Anybody who thinks they are victims of a criminal offense can file a complaint with the police department in their respective jurisdiction. In case, the police refuse to accept a specific complaint, the victim can proceed to take it to the prosecutor’s office. The prosecutor would then be taking a look at the complaint and would decide if a charge be filed or not. Once the charge is filed, the case is ready for the pretrial stage where it is decided if the case should go on trial.