Las Vegas is a hot spot of adventure, sights, and fun with its vast offerings of unique attractions. Whether you’re in Las Vegas for business, a vacation, or you’re a resident, the last thing you’d expect to deal with is being accused of a crime or arrested. Continue reading to learn more about the arrest process, what you should do if you are arrested, and how an experienced Las Vegas criminal defense attorney can help you.
What Happens During the Arrest Process in Las Vegas?
In most cases, the arresting officer will verbally inform you that you are under arrest and read your Miranda rights, place you in handcuffs, and transfer you to the City of Las Vegas Detention Center or Clark County Detention Center where you will be kept in custody.
Miranda rights are your constitutional Fifth and Sixth Amendment rights to remain silent and to have an attorney present when police question you.
Upon arrival at the detention center, you will go through a booking process where police will obtain your personal information and take your fingerprints and a photograph of you. They will then remove your personal belongings and secure them.
If you are charged with a low-level misdemeanor, you may be released with a citation to appear in court at a later date and released. If you are charged with a more serious offense, you may either be required to post bail or remain at the detention center until your case is heard by a judge.
What Should You Do If You’re Arrested?
After confirming you are being arrested or detained, the following five steps can help ensure your safety and maintain your constitutional rights:
1. Cooperate With the Police Without Volunteering Any Information
Follow the arresting officer’s instructions and try to remain calm. Do not try to run, do not resist arrest, and do not argue with the police. Do not volunteer any information, even if you think it might be helpful. At a minimum, you must provide the officer with your name and address when asked.
2. Assert Your Miranda Rights to Remain Silent and to Have an Attorney Present
As soon as the officer confirms that you are under arrest or being detained, you can exercise your Miranda rights, and you should. Clearly state to the officer, “I want to remain silent. I want a lawyer.” Once you invoke your Miranda rights, the officer is prohibited from asking you any more questions. However, under Nevada law, your right to remain silent does not include the right to refuse to take a breath or blood test for alcohol or drugs.
3. Contact a Las Vegas Criminal Defense Lawyer
Make sure that your criminal defense lawyer is present when you are questioned by the police. Las Vegas lawyers are familiar with local laws and have relationships with law enforcement and the courts, which can make a significant difference in defending your case. Your attorney will help you better understand your charges, will be able to assist you throughout your questioning and will help you avoid making further legal trouble.
4. Seek and Post Bail
In most cases, people who are arrested, called arrestees, are eligible for bail. Those accused of more severe offenses or a felony are denied bail. If you meet the requirements of your bail, your Las Vegas lawyer can help you with posting bail.
5. Go to Court or Have Your Lawyer Represent You at Court
When you are released, you will be scheduled for an arraignment date. Arraignment is when you present your plea to the court. You will either plead not guilty or guilty. Your plea determines how your case will move forward. If you are unable to attend the arraignment, your lawyer will attend to represent you. Failure to show up for your arraignment can result in an arrest warrant, additional charges, and other consequences.
What If You Are an Out-Of-State Resident?
Nevada does not differentiate between residents and nonresidents. If you are convicted of a crime in Las Vegas, you will face the same consequences as a Las Vegas resident, including jail or prison time, fines, community service, or probation.
As a nonresident, you may find it difficult to keep up with your case and may be tempted to go home and forget about your case. Don’t. Ignoring your case in Las Vegas can have devastating consequences on your life at home.
Failing to show up to court as scheduled can result in a warrant for your arrest being issued. That warrant will be reported to national databases, like the National Crime Information Center. That warrant allows police in any state to arrest you, even for minor infractions. The warrant can also show up in a background search for employment and housing, preventing you from finding a job or new residence.
This is where having an experienced Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer is important. Your attorney will manage every aspect of your case, from representing you at hearings to negotiating with the prosecutors. It may be possible that you will not have to return to Las Vegas at all.
Where Do You Go After Being Arrested?
Immediately following your arrest, you will be taken to either the City of Las Vegas Detention Center or the Clark County Detention Center.
The City of Las Vegas Detention Center is located at 3300 Stewart Avenue, Las Vegas, NV 89101.
The Clark County Detention Center is located at 330 South Casino Center Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89101
How Can the De Castroverde Law Group Help You?
Being charged with a crime can be intimidating, no matter what the charges are. With more than 25 years of criminal defense experience and two former Nevada state prosecutors on our team, De Castroverde Law Group is your choice for experienced and dedicated representation.
We’ll help you understand what the criminal charges mean, your legal rights, and the potential outcomes of your case. And we will keep you updated throughout the entire process.
If you or a loved one were recently charged with a crime in Las Vegas, contact us online or call 702-996-3779. Our bilingual, knowledgeable, and dedicated team of legal professionals and support staff have provided high-quality, aggressive, and dependable criminal defense to Las Vegas residents and visitors since 2005.