Guide for Criminal Cases

The complexities of a criminal case may overwhelm someone unfamiliar with the system. Here’s a PDF  of my pamphlet  which explains generally the parts of a trial and the processes leading up to trial. 12916-outside and 12916-inside

Conditions of Probation

A plea of guilty is a frequent outcome for criminal cases. As a part of a sentence, a defendant may be subject to a special set of rules, or conditions of probation. These rules could include a Fourth Amendment Waiver, a requirement to the defendant take drug tests, and/or any number of other conditions thatContinue reading “Conditions of Probation”

Court Ordered Rehabilitation-Pretrial

More or more often, Courts order drug/alcohol rehabilitation as a condition of any bond set for known drug abusers. These defendants happily agree. After spending months in rehabilitation, the defendant returns to Court to discover any negotiated resolution of their case requires time in prison. “What? I’m a new person. I’ve changed.” And yet, the StateContinue reading “Court Ordered Rehabilitation-Pretrial”

Grand Jury: Just a Step in the Process

Clients and family members often express concern when the idea of the Grand Jury is discussed. The Grand Jury determines who is indicted and who is not indicted. In most cases, an Indictment, or “True Bill,” results from presentation of a case to the Grand Jury. If the Grand Jury determines that a case shouldContinue reading “Grand Jury: Just a Step in the Process”

Bond and Violent Crimes

When an individual is charged with a serious violent crime, the Courts in Georgia do not automatically grant a bond. Charges for which a person can be held without bond include, but are not limited to, murder, rape, armed robbery, and drug trafficking. Inevitably, a client will ask, “why did John Smith who is chargedContinue reading “Bond and Violent Crimes”

Plea Offers

When a plea offer is made by the State, the defense attorney must present that offer to the client. Offers are not controlled by the defense attorney. At times, clients begin to feel like their attorney isn’t working for the client because the offer is so harsh. Understand that your attorney advocates for your side.Continue reading “Plea Offers”

Plea Negotiations

More than 90% of criminal and traffic cases resolve with a guilty plea of some sort. In many cases, guilty pleas are negotiated. Other times, a client may choose to enter a plea of guilty without a plea offer because we cannot reach a meeting of the minds with the State. How can an attorneyContinue reading “Plea Negotiations”

Mistrial – Hung Jury

During jury deliberations in a criminal jury trial, a jury must reach a unanimous verdict. All the jurors- 12 for felonies or 6 for misdemeanors- must agree about whether the defendant is guilty or not guilty. If after some period of time the jury cannot decide on a verdict, the judge may declare a mistrial.Continue reading “Mistrial – Hung Jury”

Choosing a Jury Trial

Every person charged with a crime in the United State has a right to a jury trial. Clients decide from time to time that a trial is necessary. In those instances, when the prosecutor would not bend and the balance to obtain a dismissal or reach a negotiated plea never shifted, we have a jury trial.Continue reading “Choosing a Jury Trial”

Negotiation

The week of February 8, 2016, Nancee Tomlinson spent the week advocating for a 17 year old who was charged with murder. Ed Tolley and Nancee Tomlinson resolved the cases for their clients to Aggravated Assault pleas. Both young men were charged with Malice Murder and Felony Murder, both of which carry a life sentenceContinue reading “Negotiation”