Between the Arraignment and the First Court Appearance

If you have been charged with a felony and have already been arraigned, you then must wait for action by the Grand Jury. Here again, the intervention of experienced counsel is extremely important to assess the nature of the evidence against you along with the strength or weakness of the prosecution’s case. Additionally, if it has not been done already, a proactive investigation should be conducted as soon as possible with respect to any available or potential defenses, witnesses, documentation, videos, etc. Too often, such available evidence and witnesses are lost due to the passage of time. Witnesses’ memories (especially alibi and other “fact” witnesses), if not probed in a timely fashion, have a tendency to fade and become less reliable over time.

Victor Knapp, Esq. provides steadfast and strategic defense to those facing criminal charges. If you are facing an arraignment or other criminal hearing, don’t delay in contacting an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help guide you through the process while standing up for your rights.

What Happens After the Arraignment?

The exact path your case takes after arraignment depends on a number of factors including the severity of the offense. For misdemeanors or violations to which the defendant pleads  not guilty, the matter will be transferred into calendar parts in NY Criminal Court. For felony matters, those offenses that can be punished with 1 year or more in jail, the matter is transferred to Part F where it remains until action is taken by a Grand Jury. Part F is, in short, an all-purpose part of the New York State Criminal Court. Following a Grand Jury indictment, the matter is moved from Part F to a Supreme Court Arraignment Part.

Attorney Protects Your Rights Following the Arraignment

Prior to the first court appearance after the arraignment, counsel can ascertain which prosecutor has been assigned to the case and request a conference (telephone or personal) with such person to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of a case as well as negotiate the possibility of an early resolution. Too often, no such discussions occur prior to the first (or even second) appearance in court after arraignment and unnecessary adjournments (especially where a client is incarcerated) occur with additional waivers of 180.80 and speedy trial rights. In certain jurisdictions, Queens and Nassau counties in particular, 180.80 must be waived or is regularly waived by attorneys as a precondition of bargaining with the district attorney.

Sometimes, it can be a waste of time to engage in extended conferencing of a case if the offer made by the prosecutor is conditioned upon the acceptance of a sentence that is substantially higher than the minimum sentence required by the particular statute or level of crime . In such cases , it might be strategically sounder not to accept any such offer and allow the case to proceed to the Grand Jury and Indictment and Supreme Court where defense counsel can negotiate directly with a Supreme Court Justice (who is not bound by the prosecutor’s recommendation as to the sentence) .

Additionally, sometimes counsel can convince a prosecutor in a felony case that, even though the client wishes to fight the case, the case does not merit prosecution on the felony level and should be reduced to the misdemeanor level and referred to the Criminal Court for continued prosecution which reduces a client’s exposure level.

For more than 30 years, Victor Knapp, Esq. has protected the rights of those accused of assault, rape, robbery, gun charges and more. If you are facing an arraignment or need determined defense for your criminal matter, call us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 718-233-3823 or contact us online.

Details about each step of the NYC arrest process can be found below:

The Arrest

Criminal Arraignment

The Grand Jury