The first stage of a criminal case is the police investigation. The police are never out to help you. They are gathering information and attempting to build their case. The police always attempt to receive a statement or an alibi. Once our office is retained, the lawyer contacts the
police on your behalf, and the police are no longer allowed to contact you directly. The police will then have to make an arrest with the information they have or decide to not make an arrest.
The second stage of a criminal case is when the case enters the case filing phase and a
case filing prosecutor is assigned the case. When the police arrest you it is a rough draft of what the charge is going to be. The case filing prosecutor has the job of filing a final draft of the charge(s). They usually take about 30 days to make their filing decision (they can file as is, file less serious charge, file more serious charge, or dismiss charge).
The third stage of a criminal case begins once the case has been filed and there is now an open case against you. During this stage many things are involved including the Arraignment, conducting discovery, filing Motions and taking depositions.
The fourth and final stage of a criminal case is Trial. The State has the burden of proving all of the elements of the crime beyond and to the exclusion of every reasonable doubt during Trial. The first step in this stage is the Jury selection. Upon completion of the Trial, the final
step is sentencing.