How to Help a Loved One Accused of a Crime in Houston, TX

07 Mar 2023
Greco Neyland, PC

The only thing more stressful than getting arrested is finding out that someone you love is now under arrest and facing criminal proceedings.

Your loved one will need all the help and support they can get during this time. Here are a few steps you can take while they are facing charges.

Hire a Lawyer

It probably goes without saying that we think you should help your loved one obtain a lawyer as quickly as possible. Explore the possibility of retaining a private firm like ours. We know you’re afraid of the costs, but the costs of doing without a private lawyer could be much higher than you’re anticipating.

For one thing, the Bureau of Justice Statistics completed a study in 2009 that noted that 68% of defendants with private attorneys were acquitted or had their charges dismissed, while 50% of defendants with public defenders had the same outcome. If you want to give your loved one their best chance of success, a private criminal lawyer is the way to go.

Bail Them Out

Defendants who sit in jail fare worse.

  1. They are 27.3% more likely to be found guilty by a jury.
  2. They’re 27.5% more likely to accept a plea bargain.

Bailing your loved one out of jail is one of the best ways to help them. This allows them to help us help them find exculpatory evidence and witnesses. It also gives them the space and breathing room to make good decisions about their case.

If you’re worried about the cost, look for a bail bond company that accepts payment plans and actively works to keep costs low.

Avoid Pressing Them for Details

We know you’d love the reassurance that your loved one is completely innocent.

Unfortunately, you can harm them by asking them to discuss their case. For one thing, most family members and friends may be subpoenaed. That means you could be forced to testify against your loved one, and you could be required to tell the court anything they told you.

Spousal privilege does exist, which means if the accused is your spouse, you can’t be forced to testify. But be careful. If you are the alleged victim or you and your spouse weren’t married yet when the crime was committed, you can still be forced to testify.

If the person you are trying to help is not your spouse, the best thing you can do for them is love them and reassure them that you will continue to stick with them even if the criminal process doesn’t move in their favor.

After a Verdict

Sometimes, a criminal matter will go your loved one’s way, and they’ll be acquitted. Or offered a deferred prosecution agreement. Or charges will be dropped or dismissed.

Keep in mind their life may still be in shambled. Getting arrested is traumatic. Often, an accused party loses their job and their housing. They may need additional financial or emotional support.

If they are found guilty and are going to prison, you can help them by helping them keep their commissary account current. The commissary account helps them pay for toiletries and food, which is often inadequate in prison. Texas prisons are brutal, and even $100 a month could help them make their existence a little more tolerable.

When they come home, you can help them by helping them to arrange to house, giving them time to heal, and helping them find employment opportunities that won’t discriminate against them for their past. Prepare yourself and them for the long road ahead. If they won’t be coming home, don’t forget about them.

Remember, our criminal justice system grows more aggressive by the day. Someday you could be the person on the wrong end of the handcuffs.

See also:

Why You Shouldn’t Talk to Your Friends and Family Members about Your Houston, TX Criminal Case

How Does Electronic Monitoring Work in Houston, TX?

What Happens Between Arrest and a Houston, TX Criminal Trial?

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