Fulton County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Fulton County Criminal Defense Attorney

The criminal justice system can be overwhelming and traumatic to navigate alone. Whether you are facing charges for a crime you committed or you have been wrongfully accused, you could face significant criminal consequences. The most effective way to potentially avoid a conviction is to work with a Fulton County criminal defense lawyer.

If you are convicted, you can face time in jail, probation, and fines, along with long-term consequences like a permanent criminal record. A criminal record can harm many future opportunities in your career, education, and even housing. You can be convicted even if you are innocent, and it’s important to not take that risk with your future. Effective legal defense is important for obtaining the most positive outcome.

Fulton County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Fulton County Criminal Defense With Miller North & Brill

At Miller North & Brill, our team has worked in criminal defense for over 30 years in both state and federal courts. We diligently serve those in our community who are charged with crimes, and our team knows how serious these cases are for our clients and their families. Our firm provides effective and precise legal defense, no matter how serious the charges you face are. We strongly believe that everyone deserves high-quality legal care.

When you face criminal charges without legal defense, you are much more likely to be convicted and endure severe penalties that alter your entire life. An attorney is essential for investigating your case and arrest, creating an effective defense, and advocating for your rights. Our attorneys work to find the ideal result for your case. If we cannot get your charges dismissed, we can advocate to limit the impact that a conviction has on your life. We can also appeal a wrongful conviction.

The Criminal Defense Cases We Have Handled

When you face criminal charges in Fulton County, you need effective criminal defense from an attorney who has worked on cases similar to yours. Although your criminal case is unique, there are several benefits to finding an attorney with experience and success in situations like yours. An experienced attorney knows how to handle common challenges and is aware of the defenses that could apply to you. They also know how to properly investigate your arrest.

The attorneys at Miller North & Brill have experience in criminal defense cases, such as:

  • Drug Crimes: Trafficking, manufacture, and possession are common drug crimes. Possession of less than 1 ounce of marijuana is a misdemeanor crime, while most other drug crimes are charged as felonies. Some types of drug trafficking charges have mandatory minimum sentences from 5 to 25 years. The severity of penalties relies on the type of controlled substance in the crime and the amount that was present.
  • Theft Crimes: Whether theft crimes are charged as misdemeanors or felonies relies on the value of the items stolen and whether there were aggravating factors present. Aggravating factors may include the use of a weapon, whether anyone was injured or killed during the theft, a criminal record, or other crimes being committed at the same time.
  • DUI: DUI offenses occur when an individual is operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This includes prescription drugs. A conviction for a DUI can occur if the driver is over the legal BAC limit or intoxicated to the point of impairment, even if they are not over the legal limit. A DUI conviction can result in significant fines, jail time, driver’s license suspension, probation, community service, and other consequences. Repeat DUI offenses carry much more serious penalties.
  • Domestic Violence: Domestic violence is any abuse or violence enacted against a partner, spouse, family member by blood or marriage, or household member. Domestic violence crimes include assault, battery, sexual assault, and false imprisonment. These cases are treated very seriously by prosecutors, and it’s important to have legal representation.
  • Kidnapping: Kidnapping occurs when a person takes another individual to some location against their will. This is a different crime than false imprisonment. Kidnapping is a felony, and a conviction results in a minimum prison sentence of 10 years.
  • Sex Crimes: Sex offenses include public indecency, sexual assault or battery, and sex offenses involving children. There are significant criminal consequences associated with some of these crimes, along with severe consequences for the social and professional reputations of those who are convicted.
  • Violent Crimes: Violent offenses include assault, battery, armed robbery, homicide, and gang-related offenses. Most violent crimes are charged as felonies.
  • White Collar Crimes: White collar crimes are typically financially related and nonviolent, although they may be connected to other crimes that are violent. These offenses include embezzlement, money laundering, and many types of fraud. A conviction for these crimes typically results in criminal penalties and civil claims.

A criminal appeal is also possible for some criminal convictions. If you are wrongfully convicted of a crime, and your case meets certain requirements, you can appeal the decision to a higher court. Miller North & Brill has experience in appellate courts and can help you file an appeal.

Misdemeanor Charges in Fulton County

Misdemeanors are less serious crimes than felonies. In Georgia, a misdemeanor is any criminal charge that has a penalty of a maximum of 12 months in jail. Some common misdemeanor crimes include petty larceny and shoplifting, public intoxication, littering, criminal trespass, and possession of small amounts of marijuana. The two main types of misdemeanors are:

  • Regular Misdemeanor: A conviction for a misdemeanor results in up to 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
  • High and Aggravated Misdemeanor: Being convicted of a high and aggravated misdemeanor results in jail for up to 1 year and a fine of up to $5,000.

A judge can also suspend misdemeanor jail sentences in favor of community service, probation, or other alternative sentencing. Although misdemeanors are considered to be less serious due to their lower penalties, they can still have a significant impact and should not be taken lightly. A misdemeanor conviction still results in a criminal record, which impacts an individual’s future almost as severely as a felony criminal record.

Felony Charges in Fulton County

Felony charges are more serious than misdemeanors, and they are usually crimes that are destructive or cause harm. This includes repeat DUI charges, most drug possession charges, burglary, and aggravated assault. A conviction for a felony can result in a year or more in prison, and some crimes have a mandatory minimum sentence of between 1 year to 25 years in prison.

FAQs About Fulton County, GA Criminal Defense Laws

What Is The Average Hourly Rate For Criminal Defense Attorneys in Fulton County, Georgia?

In Fulton County, Georgia, criminal defense attorneys typically charge hourly rates ranging from $150 to $300. The specific rate depends on factors such as the attorney’s experience, the location of the law firm, the complexity of your case, the severity of charges, and whether a trial is anticipated. It is essential to have an open discussion with the attorney to understand their fee structure and any potential additional costs associated with your case, ensuring transparency about the financial commitment throughout the legal process.

How Long Can a Misdemeanor Charge Be Pending in Georgia?

There is a statute of limitations for most crimes, which outlines the amount of time from the commission of the crime that the prosecution has to bring charges. In Georgia, all misdemeanors have a statute of limitations of 2 years. If state prosecutors do not file charges within this timeframe, they lose the chance to do so in most cases.

Once an individual is charged, these time limits do not apply, but the case usually begins soon after. An attorney can help you determine the timeline of your case.

What Are the Most Common Defenses in Court?

There are many criminal defenses, and the most common include:

  • Pleading innocent, including when the prosecutor fails to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt and when the defendant has an alibi
  • The affirmative defense of self-defense, usually applicable to violent crimes
  • Constitutional violations, including illegal search and seizure, entrapment, or other rights violations
  • The affirmative defense of mental incapacitation, including insanity and under-the-influence defenses

Affirmative defenses mean that the defendant admits to the crime but claims that there is a lawful reason for the crime. Every criminal case is unique, and it’s important to work with a qualified defense attorney to determine what defense will be most effective.

What Is the Second Chance Law in Georgia?

Georgia’s Second Chance Act gives those convicted of certain misdemeanors the ability to restrict and seal those criminal records. You may qualify for this if:

  • You were convicted of one misdemeanor or several misdemeanors in the same criminal case.
  • A minimum of 4 years have passed since you finished your sentence, either in jail or through probation.
  • In that time, you have not been convicted of any crimes except minor traffic violations.
  • There are no criminal charges currently pending against you.
  • The misdemeanor conviction is not one that is excluded from restriction.

What Is the Strongest Type of Defense Against a Criminal Charge?

The strongest defense will rely on the unique factors present in your case, investigation, and arrest. Some of the strongest defenses include showing that there is not enough evidence against you to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty.

Another strong defense occurs when there are mistakes in the evidence chain or evidence is gained through illegal means or due to constitutional rights violations. Then, the evidence may be inadmissible in court. Sometimes, this includes the evidence from the arrest. This can result in the charges being dismissed.

Defined Your Rights With an Effective Criminal Defense Attorney in Fulton County

It’s important to have a legal team defending you and building an effective defense that gives you the greatest chance of success in the legal system. At Miller North & Brill, we know that the criminal justice system often fails to uphold true justice. Our team strives to right these wrongs and can fight for your interests in or out of court. Contact our team today.

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