Facing criminal charges in New Mexico is a serious matter that should be handled by experienced criminal defense attorneys. We believe that every person deserves to have highly qualified legal representatives support them and protect their rights when they are dealing with a criminal prosecution. The attorneys at New Mexico Legal Group have over 30 years of experience successfully defending criminal cases.
New Mexico Criminal Defense
Arrested in New Mexico – Now What?
Misdemeanor vs. Felony
In New Mexico, a felony crime is generally considered to be a serious crime with a potential jail sentence exceeding 1 year. Examples of felony crimes are burglary, drug trafficking, kidnapping, and all sex crimes. A misdemeanor crime is generally defined as a less serious crime with a potential jail sentence of less than one year. Examples of misdemeanor crimes are DWI, assault, driving on a revoked license, and all other traffic offenses.
How and When You Can Be Arrested
For the commission of misdemeanor crimes, you may be arrested under the following circumstances:
- You are accused of committing a crime in the presence of a police officer;
- You are accused of a crime falling under the warrantless arrest exception, such as battery on a household member, which allows you to be arrested without a warrant;
- You are arrested pursuant to an arrest warrant. It should be noted that arrests pursuant to arrest warrants in misdemeanor cases are not very common in New Mexico. Typically, you will be called to court by a summons rather than being arrested if you are not at the scene when the alleged misdemeanor was committed.
You may be arrested for a felony offense under the following circumstances:
- You are accused of committing a felony crime in the presence of a police officer;
- You are accused of committing a felony crime with exigent circumstances;
- You are arrested pursuant to an arrest warrant.
What Happens After Arrest
After you are arrested, you will be transported to a police station or jail. At that time you will be booked which usually includes fingerprinting and photographing. In some circumstances, you will be advised of your Miranda rights, and asked to answer questions. You should never provide a statement to police without legal counsel present.
What to Do After Arrest
After arrest, it is beneficial to your case to take the following steps:
- Exercise your right to remain silent. You have an absolute right under the Fifth Amendment not to talk to law enforcement about your case. Regardless of the threats or promises being made to you, you should exercise this right until you have spoken with legal counsel.
- Attempt to contact someone who can arrange for your bail. When you have been arrested, your arrest warrant will have a bail amount attached to it. If you have been arrested without a warrant, such as in a DWI case, a bail will be set for you shortly after your arrest. You should take advantage of your opportunity to make a phone call to contact someone who may be able to arrange your bail, and/or contact a bail bondsman.
The Ten-Day Rule
If you have been arrested and are unable to post bond, the State has only ten days from the date of your arrest to submit your case for a Preliminary Hearing or a Grand Jury proceeding. If the State fails to do so, you will automatically be released after this time period. In less serious cases, such as possession of a controlled substance, it is not uncommon for a defendant to be released on the ten-day rule.
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New Mexico Criminal Defense Attorney Cynthia Payne
Aggressive Criminal Defense Representation
DUI I first sat down with Cynthia and explained everything. She gave me the most honest information and details to the outcomes and options that I have. In court, Ms. Payne fought for me wholeheartedly and spoke to the judge with upmost respect. The outcome, my case was dismissed. I couldn’t have asked for a better lawyer. Ms. Payne is utterly the best without any exception! Thank you.
Excellent Outcome I hired Cynthia to represent me in the first-ever arrest in my life for DWI, and she prevailed in court to the point of having my case dismissed. She was able to answer my questions and allay my fears. I am beyond grateful for her legal expertise and ability in the courtroom.
DUI I hired Cynthia Payne because she was genuine when she sat down with me and explained what she exactly did for the client. I was considering to get a public defender but Cynthia explained the difference between a public defender and an attorney, keep in mind she was never bias. She gave me the comfort to make my decision understanding that an attorney could be expensive but I did not mind. Before even hiring her she went ahead and told me how my case looked which was nice to see where I stood at the moment. The case went on for around 7 months Cynthia did interviews with client and officers, she researched the video tape and audio, she investigated the case, most importantly she always kept me up to date with what was happening and what to expect. Jessica was amazing as well l, both of them were available whenever I had a question or concern. They didn’t hesitate to answer any question. It was nice that Cynthia took my personal life into consideration giving me the comfort of support. Cynthia made sure that any communication or any terminology that was being used was always communicated properly to me. I was never lost or confused in the case which made everything very easy flowing. I am happy to have Cynthia represent me.
Highly Recommend When I went to Cynthia and Jessica to take on my DUI case, what I liked most is that they assured me that my life is not over, and that they will take care of everything. I was a complete nervous wreck and Cynthia made me feel really optimistic about my case, and she even put together a case binder to give me. There were a lot of variables in my case with me being from out-of-state and then eventually moving to another state, but Jessica kept me updated on everything and eventually Cynthia even got my cased dismissed. I really was able to put this all in the back of my mind and continue my life, and like Cynthia said, it all worked out in the end. I really think Cynthia is worth the price for the peace of mind itself, let alone the amazing work her and Jessica do.
Need Legal Assistance From a New Mexico Criminal Defense Attorney?
Call New Mexico Legal Group at 505.843.7303 or get started with a free case evaluation.