Criminal Process

Understanding the criminal process is a major obstacle for many people. To help ensure your path is navigated smoothly and correctly, you must hire the correct attorney. I have 8 years experience as a prosecutor and I am just the right attorney for your legal needs.

Sean Poll Criminal Process

Criminal Complaint

  • The first document filed with the court.
  • Complaints are filed either by the police or a private citizen.
  • The Complaint alleges the crime against you

Arraignment

  • Arraignment is your first appearance before a judge.
  • The judge will inform you of the charges against you.
  • The judge will set your bail and your preliminary hearing date.

Preliminary Hearing

  • You have a Constitutional right to an attorney at this stage and you should have an attorney for this proceeding!
  • This is the first time you will hear the evidence alleged by the Commonwealth.
  • Decisions you make at this proceeding can and often do affect the future of your case.

Formal Arraignment

  • The District Attorney’s office will inform you of the charges pending against you in the Court of Common Pleas.

Pre-trial

  • Request Discovery.
  • File Suppression motions.
  • File joinder or severance motions.

Trial/Plea

  • Your day in court to fight the charges.
  • You will either plead guilty or go to trial.
  • You can either have a jury trial or a bench trial.

Sentencing

  • The judge ultimately decides the sentence.
  • Sentencing can be continued for a Pre-sentencing Investigation to be completed.
  • Defendants are allowed to address the court.