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How does being arrested work?

As a resident of Virginia who has gotten into some trouble with the law, you know that the arrest process can be a scary one to deal with firsthand. It's important to know what's happening in advance.

FindLaw takes a look at the chronology of an arrest, so that you know what to expect. During an arrest, the first thing that should happen is being read your Miranda Rights. If they aren't, it's a breach of your Fifth Amendment Rights. These rights include:

  • Right to remain silent and refuse to answer questions
  • The right to an attorney
  • Knowing anything you say can be used against you in court
  • You can be appointed an attorney if you can't afford one
  • If you decide to stop answering questions until you get an attorney, you can

After that, you will be arrested and booked. This can include a total search of your person and area around you for concealed weapons, stolen items, and so on. Personal property may be confiscated. When booked, you will be asked for personal information like your birthdate and name. You will have your fingerprints and photograph taken. You may be asked to give a handwriting sample or participate in a lineup.

After that, a prosecutor will review your case and decide what charges to file. These charges may be changed. Arraignment is next. In this step, the charges are read and you plead guilty or not guilty. Between this and trial, you may get out of jail by posting bail.

If you would like to know even more about this process, consider contacting an attorney to discuss it further.

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