In the world of criminal defense law, there is an abundance of terms and rules that are very complicated to understand. While Savannah criminal defense attorneys go to school for years to learn the ins and outs of the law, layman often times have questions about common terms that they do not understand. Continue reading to find out the answers to a few frequently asked questions that your average Joe may ask:
Q: What is a motion to dismiss?
A: A motion to dismiss is a pretrial notion that is filed when a defense attorney and a prosecutor are able to agree on a set or group of facts, and then argue to the court that based on those facts there is not a reason to charge the defendant. During this stage the court may dismiss the charges that have been alleged against the defendant if it believes that there isn’t sufficient evidence to find the defendant guilty.
Q: What does an appeal mean?
A: In nearly every jurisdiction in the United States, those that have been charged and convicted of a crime by a judge or by a jury have the right to appeal their guilty charge in the court of law. An appeal is when a man or a woman asks an Appellate or a high court to go back over the ruling that a lower court issued. Basically, if you and your attorney agree that the court that ruled over your case made a mistake somewhere along the way, an appeal is usually made and another court hears the case. This may result in a new trial, or even the dismissal of the case altogether.
Q: What does arson mean?
A: When most folks think about the word arson, they immediately think of fire. And that thought would be right, as the act of committing arson means that an individual intentionally lights a structure, building, establishment or something of the like on fire.
The charge of arson can become much more serious if the structure that was set on fire had people in it at the time that the crime was committed. Men and women that are convicted of arson under these circumstances typically face years in prison. Those convicted of a lesser charge of arson can still face jail time, although the charge is not quite as serious.
If you live in the state of Georgia and you have any questions regarding legal terms, it is best to contact a professional criminal defense attorney in Savannah. That way you know that all of your questions are answered correctly, and your lawyer can help you avoid jail time by going over any charges filed against you.