If you’ve already been through felony arraignment in Franklin County, you know the serious nature of the criminal allegations against you. It is important to remember is that this proceeding is just one of many phases involved with the criminal process in Ohio. There are a few more steps until your trial, and several opportunities to defend yourself along the way.
Still, you probably have a multitude of questions and concerns about what happens next. At Luftman, Heck & Associates, our experienced Columbus criminal defense lawyers can explain the criminal process and let you know what to expect following an arrest on felony charges. To schedule a free and confidential case consultation, contact us today at (614) 500-3836.
Post-Arraignment Begins the Pretrial Phase of an Ohio Criminal Case
Under the Ohio Rules of Criminal Procedure, your arraignment kicks off the pretrial stage of your case. This phase includes several activities:
Discovery and Deposition
Though the evidence was sufficient to support probable cause for your arrest, the prosecution must prove that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt to obtain a conviction. The prosecutor may want to seek additional facts through documents, other types of evidence, and depositions of witnesses.
More importantly, your Columbus criminal defense attorney will engage in discovery to uncover evidence that could benefit your case. Anything that could serve as an alibi could lead to a dismissal of the charges before your trial. Plus, the evidence revealed through discovery could result in an acquittal.
Routine Court Appearances
The court will schedule multiple status conferences to review the progress of discovery, depositions, and other developments in the criminal process. There will also be the opportunity to address plea bargains, during which you may be presented with options to resolve the charges. In exchange for pleading guilty, you may be able to work out a plea agreement for a reduced charge, or for a less severe punishment.
Potential Proceedings After Felony Arraignment in Franklin County
Pretrial litigation also provides the opportunity for the parties to try and resolve the case before it goes to trial. Your criminal defense lawyer may employ various strategies to benefit your case, such as:
A motion is a request for the judge to determine a key issue in a case. When the subject is evidence, an attorney will either seek to access it, or to prevent it from being presented in court. For instance, any evidence that police obtained in violation of your civil rights is not admissible. Your lawyer may file a motion to suppress to keep it out of court.
On the other hand, there may be evidence that could serve to exonerate you, but it is being withheld or delayed. A motion to compel ensures that this information is properly considered.
Motions to Dismiss
Another strategy a defense attorney may use in pretrial litigation is a motion to dismiss the charges against you. If it becomes clear that the prosecution cannot prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, your lawyer may convince the judge to drop the case. The most likely scenario would be if you were successful in a motion to suppress illegally-obtained evidence. When the prosecutor cannot use the information, there’s typically not enough factual support for a conviction.
Call a Columbus Felony Defense Attorney Today
It’s not too late to retain an experienced criminal defense attorney, even after your felony arraignment in Franklin County. At Luftman, Heck & Associates, we have extensive knowledge of pretrial activities, along with considerable experience developing strategies to obtain a favorable outcome. We can review the details of your case, and tell you more about potential defense options. Call us today at (614) 500-3836, or reach out via our online form to schedule a free consultation of your case.