In most criminal cases, there is a delay between a criminal investigation and a prosecutor filing a criminal charge. This period is crucial for a defense attorney to try and convince the state not to charge you with a crime or to reduce the charges that may be brought against you.
This window of opportunity should not be wasted. The actions you take during a pre-charge investigation can be the difference between being criminally charged and the charges being dropped. You should contact a criminal defense attorney immediately if you believe you are under investigation for a criminal offense.
Pre-Charge Attorney in Houston, TX
You only have a limited amount of time before you are charged. Take advantage of this window and start building your defense. Our criminal defense team will listen to your story and formulate a defense plan that is in your best interest.
Take to the first step in building your defense and contact The Gonzalez Law Group, PLLC. To schedule a time to speak with us more about your case call (832) 530-4070 or submit your information in the online contact form. The Gonzalez Law Group, PLLC has 70 years of collective experience defending clients in communities across Harris County including Houston, Deer Park, Pasadena, Pearland and many others.
The investigation that takes place before charges are formally filed is crucial for prosecutors in building a case against you. A pre-charge investigation, also known as the pre-charge stage, is the period of time where you are under investigation by state prosecutors for committing a crime, but you haven’t been formally charged.
Even though you have yet to be charged, this stage can involve being arrested, questioned and released without a citation. Police or state prosecutors may also try to contact you and attempted to gather information about the criminal allegations. It is important that you do not answer any questions from law enforcement officials or prosecutors unless you have legal representation present.
It cannot be emphasized enough how important it is for you to seek legal representation if you are under investigation for a crime. The sooner you do, the sooner a defense attorney can start working on a defense plan.
There are numerous crimes against children that can result in an investigation by Child Protective Service (CPS) before criminal charges are formally filed. Some of these cases include abuse, neglect or exploitation. The purpose of a CPS investigation is to determine if a child has been neglected or abused or if they face any long-term or immediate danger.
If a social worker finds evidence to support the allegations against you, the next step is to determine if you, the parent, can manage the threats against a child and keep them safe. If not, the child will be removed from the home and placed in foster care. When a child is removed from their home and placed in foster care, CPS may report their findings to the Attorney General who may in turn file criminal charges against you.
You have rights during a CPS investigation. You are not required to answer any questions asked by CPS investigators and should exercise your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent. Admitting that you drink or lose your temper now and then could be blown out of proportion and used to incriminate you.
If you have been served with a restraining order, it means someone has gone to the court and told a judge they are fearful of you. What makes a restraining order a pre-charge issue is the potential for it to turn into a criminal investigation, especially if you are suspected of committed domestic violence.
Once you are served with a restraining order, you will be required to attend a hearing where you will have the opportunity to express to the judge why the order should not be issued. It is imperative that an attorney represents you during this hearing. It’s common for individuals who represent themselves to end up making incriminating statements because they admitted to questions during cross-examination.
Harris County Criminal Investigations Bureau– Follow this link to learn about Harris County’s Criminal Investigations Bureau. You can find out who is in charge of the bureau and how they investigate crimes. You can also gain access to other information regarding the Harris County Sheriff’s Office such as their services, how to report crimes and jail information.
Texas Child Protective Services– Visit the official website of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services to learn more CPS. You can gain access to state laws and CPS policies, data and statistics regarding child abuse and ways to keep children safe.
Harris County Criminal Defense Lawyer
Now is not the time to be idle. If you or someone you know is under investigation for an alleged crime, contact The Gonzalez Law Group, PLLC. Every case that comes through our door is treated with vigilance, and yours is no exception.
To schedule a free consultation, call (832) 530-4070 or submit your information in the online contact form. The Gonzalez Law Group, PLLC assist clients with pre-charge issues in Harris County.