Understanding the legal process is important whether you’ve been charged with a misdemeanor or a serious felony. Knowing what happens at each step of the process helps you feel more confident in your defense and avoid missteps that could hurt your case.
An arraignment is one of the first steps in the legal process after an arrest, booking, and preliminary hearings. At an arraignment, the court reads the charges against you out loud. Then you will enter a plea: guilty, not guilty, or no contest.
Sometimes, an arraignment will happen quickly after your arrest, but it can take a few months. That is because the state or prosecuting attorney must file charges against you before the arraignment can take place. Arraignments are typically very brief. Your attorney may even decide to forgo the reading of the charges to save time.
Typically, in Wisconsin, a preliminary hearing will occur before the arraignment. At the preliminary hearing, the court decides whether there is probable cause in your case and if the case should proceed to trial. The arraignment usually happens at the same hearing, but not always.
Find an attorney to represent you at your arraignment. The attorneys at Tracey Wood and Associates can help you understand the legal process and what each step means for your case. Contact us today to discuss the charges against you and the best way to fight them in court.