Helping People At All Stages Of A Criminal Case
If you have been arrested or served with a summons for criminal charges in Maryland, we can help. Our firm represents clients in criminal matters from pre-filing stage through trial and post-conviction relief. Common cases we take on include:
- Traffic citations
- Driving under the influence/driving while intoxicated (DUI/DWI)
- Misdemeanors and felonies
- Drug possession and distribution charges
- Firearms violations
- Violent crimes
We also help clients petition for expungement and post-conviction relief. If you need the help of a criminal law attorney, call 410-886-7457 or email us to schedule a consultation in our Annapolis law office.
What To Do If You Are Arrested
Your words and actions at the time of your arrest can have a huge impact on your future. You should not speak with the police or volunteer any information without an attorney present. For DUI/DWI, do not perform the roadside sobriety tests. Statements are often taken out of context or improperly noted by the police, often without the note taker realizing it. This can be very damaging to your defense.
Even if you believe you are innocent of all charges, it is usually not a good idea to make a statement or agree to speak with authorities. There is too much at stake to do anything without the presence of an experienced criminal defense attorney. One innocent statement incorrectly documented can be the difference between freedom and time behind bars.
Representing Clients At Court Proceedings And At Trial
As your criminal law attorneys, we thoroughly scrutinize every detail leading up to your arrest or the filing of charges. Our team examines all areas of the State’s case for any violation of your rights or improper police procedures. We also look into the credibility and motives of witnesses and review the methods used in the gathering of evidence. Our goal is to prevent you from having a criminal record. If that is not possible, we will do everything we can to minimize fines and avoid probation and time behind bars.
Filing Appeals And Post-Conviction Relief
If you come to us after receiving a guilty verdict, we can help you file an appeal. We will challenge any legal errors we can find to get your conviction overturned or to get the court to grant you a new trial. You have only 30 days from the day of sentencing to file an appeal, so acting quickly is essential.
We also help clients who are currently serving sentences, on parole or on probation, pursue post-conviction relief. The deadline for filing for post-conviction relief if you were convicted after September 30, 1995, is 10 years from the day of sentencing; for sentences handed down prior to October 1, 1995, there is no deadline. If you lose your post-conviction case, you have 30 days to appeal the ruling.
These are short deadlines. If you don’t file the necessary paperwork in time, you will lose your opportunity to file an appeal. Contact our firm as soon as possible to make sure you or your loved ones’ legal claims will be heard.
Shielding And Expungement Of Court And Police Records
An experienced defense attorney can mean the difference between an innocent verdict and having a criminal record. An arrest or conviction can restrict your employment, educational and housing opportunities, and come back to haunt you 20 or 30 years down the road in ways that you would never expect.
We can examine your criminal record and determine if you are eligible for shielding or expungement. These are legal processes that remove your criminal record from the courts’ website search results and allow you to legally refrain from disclosing the facts of your record on most job applications.
Contact The Criminal Defense Attorneys At Bennett & Ellison, P.C.
To speak with one of our criminal law attorneys, call as soon as possible at 410-886-7457 or email us to set up a consultation.