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How to Prepare for a Preliminary Hearing

How to Prepare for a Preliminary Hearing

The preliminary hearing is one of the first steps in a criminal trial process for felony and gross misdemeanor offenses. It is the point at which the prosecutor attempts to convince the judge that they have enough evidence to charge you with an alleged crime. If the state wins the preliminary hearing, your case will be bound over (sent to the trial court). However, if you are successful at this initial proceeding, charges shouldn’t be filed, and your case should be dismissed. The burden of proof, which rests on the prosecutor, is much lower during a preliminary hearing, which is why it is essential to thoroughly prepare for it.

Discussing Your Case with Your Attorney

The preliminary hearing is like a trial in that the prosecutor presents evidence and calls witnesses to make a case against you. You and your lawyer also have a chance to cross-examine those testifying for the state, as well as challenge the prosecutor’s allegations.

Under N.R.S. 171.1965, you have the right to receive copies of the following from the prosecutor:

  • Statements recorded or made in writing by you and any witnesses
  • Results of physical or mental tests
  • Tangible objects that will be presented as evidence

Because a thorough review of the above information takes time, it is imperative to retain counsel as soon as possible after you’ve been charged. Discussing the circumstances with your attorney in light of the information the prosecutor has can reveal potential issues and help make a stronger argument for your case.

Telling Your Side of the Story

Building a defense strategy for your preliminary hearing requires having the circumstances told from your point of view. To provide an accurate account of what happened, it’s crucial to record the details of the incident. This includes identifying who else was present, what statements were made, and how the arrest procedure happened. You have various constitutional protections, and if anything that occurred during the process violated your rights, that could be used to weaken the prosecutor’s case.

Prepare for Any Possible Outcome

Although having a strong defense could help your situation, unexpected outcomes could arise. It is best to prepare for these possibilities before appearing for the hearing. Your attorney can help you understand the charges you’re facing, the potential results of a preliminary hearing, and the next steps should the prosecutor succeed during the proceedings.

For Fierce Legal Defense, Contact The Draskovich Law Group

If you have been charged with a felony, reach out our attorneys as soon as possible. When you retain our services, we will get started on your case and work with you to build an effective defense. We have tried over 100 criminal cases, including sex crimes, drug crimes, and theft crimes, and we know what it takes to obtain favorable outcomes. Our attorneys have the skills necessary to defend your rights during a preliminary hearing, at negotiations, or in trial.

We are ready to provide the legal representation you need. Call us at (702) 381-6590 or contact us online.


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