Orange County Arraignment Procedures
How the Orange County arraignment procedure works
A defendant has the right to a speedy trial
As a requirement of the 6th Amendment of United State Constitution, any accused party held in custody has the right to an arraignment within 72 hours after arrest. It is because of this that arraignments are usually the first step in any criminal procedure that occurs on a courtroom in the presence of a magistrate or an Orange County judge. The purpose of this step is to provide the accused with a reading of the crime that he/she is being charged for. In the case that an arraignment does not occur within the stipulated period then the accused has the right to argue that his/her constitutional rights for a speedy trial have been infringed. The Orange County DA’s office must move quickly to ensure a defendant is arraigned as quickly as possible.
The first step after being booked into the Orange County jail
Although it is quite obvious that getting arrested by either an Orange County deputy sheriff leads to an arraignment, it is worth noting that the rules regarding arraignment will depend on the crime for which the accused is charged with (federal or state crime) and the state of residence. Still on the same, the rules will also vary in the case that an arraignment is required for a misdemeanor or charges of a felony. It is during arraignment that the suspect finds out whether or not they will be able to get bailed out using an Orange County bail bonds company.
The steps involved in arraignment
- The accused appears in court and is advised by the court of the right to have legal representation by a lawyer or public defender in the case that the accused can not afford the former. In the case that the accused requires a criminal lawyer, his/her requirements will be met and the arraignment postponed to a later date.
- Once represented, the accused can then have the charges read to him/her. This is the most formal part of the arraignment
- The accused then enters a plea; guilty , not guilty or no contest. In pleading no-contest, the accused does not admit to the guilt but doesn’t contest the charges either. Parties can also waive an arraignment and only enter a plea. In fact, in some cases, the accused attorney’s enters in to such an agreement with the prosecuting attorney in exchange for such things as an expedited discovery or something similar.
- Lastly, arrangements such as bail and/or release, even if previously addressed, are then reviewed at the arraignment. In the case of further proceedings such as a trial date and a pretrial conference, the court will announce the dates at the arraignment. In Orange County, a Santa Ana bail bonds agent can pursue getting the defendant bonded out if bail is granted.