The U.S. Constitution prohibits defendants from being deprived of their liberty without due process, so it is imperative that you understand your rights after you are taken into police custody so you ensure you get your due process and are not held unlawfully.
In the state of Nevada, you can be arrested by a peace officer under a variety of circumstances including when a warrant has been issued or when an officer believes he has witnessed the commission of a criminal offense. In order for you to be lawfully detained, however, certain procedures must be followed. One of those procedures involves a timely appearance before a magistrate.
LV Criminal Defense is an experienced Las Vegas firm that offers skilled legal advocacy to defendants throughout the criminal justice process. As soon as you are detained, you have the right to make a phone call to a lawyer. Make your call to us so we can help you to enforce your rights after your arrest and so we can advise you on your options as you appear before a magistrate in Nevada.
Nevada Revised Statutes Section 171.177 guarantees a prompt appearance before a magistrate for any defendant who has been detained by a peace officer for a possible violation of any local ordinance or for allegedly committing any misdemeanor crime under state law.
A defendant must be taken before a magistrate if he demands an immediate appearance before a magistrate; if he has been detained because of an arrest warrant; if he’s been arrested; or if he refuses to give a written promise to appear in court after being issued a misdemeanor citation. If the defendant is brought before the magistrate without a warrant, the defendant must be released unless a complaint must be filed forthwith.
The defendant who has been taken into custody generally must be taken either to the magistrate who issued the arrest warrant, or to the closest available magistrate that is empowered to commit people facing criminal charges. If a defendant can be released on bail without appearing before a magistrate, the defendant must be released and will then be required to appear before the magistrate at the earliest time that is convenient after the release.
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If defendants are not brought before a magistrate within 72 hours of being arrested or detained (excluding days when court is not in session), the prosecuting attorney will be asked to explain the delay. If the magistrate determines delay was unnecessary, the defendant may be released. Defendants have the right to appear before a magistrate shortly after arrest because it would be unconstitutional to keep people in custody for lengthy periods of time without due process. The hearing before the magistrate serves as due process at this phase of criminal proceedings.
When you have been taken into custody, you should demand a lawyer right away so your attorney can help to make sure you are able to appear before a magistrate in a timely manner. As you appear before the magistrate, you should have an attorney who can prepare you for the process. You will want to argue for bail, understand the charges, and begin formulating a legal strategy in regards to raising defenses, negotiating a plea deal, or seeking dismissal of charges.
LV Criminal Defense can provide you with assistance after your arrest. Give us a call as soon as possible to speak with a Las Vegas criminal defense attorney who will get right to work on getting you out of jail and developing a legal strategy to try to keep you out of jail permanently.