The criminal process can be very confusing for those charged with a crime. This is particularly so in the case of felony charges.
The Process of Felony Defense
There are many stages to a felony defense. At each stage, there are opportunities and hazards that must be carefully considered and weighed. Due to the severe consequences of a felony conviction, a defendant should understand each stage of the criminal proceeding along with all the possible opportunities, risks and consequences at each stage.
A felony criminal proceeding can go on for a very long time. Sometimes, years may elapse between the alleged crime and prosecution. Even in cases that are prosecuted immediately, a felony case may drag on for well over a year due to the recent narrowing of 6th Amendment speedy trial rights in New Mexico.
Understand the Process and Your Rights in the Process
In short, felony charges are very serious. The process can be long, confusing and above all extremely stressful to the accused. Understanding the process can by no means alleviate all of the stress of a felony charge, but understanding the process will better prepare a defendant for the weeks and months ahead.
There are a number of resources for learning about your felony charges. We have provided a number of links before including links to our Collected Readings page which will take you to list of topics including links to our extensive New Mexico Criminal Law blog.
In addition, there are numerous other valuable resources for learning about the felony charges and the criminal defense process generally. These include Nolo, Justia, Legal Information Institute, and Findlaw to name just a few.