While the Canada-wide crime rate is heading towards a downward trend, the crime rate in Windsor is on the way up. Stats Canada reported earlier this year that Windsor CMA had 4,767 Criminal Code violations per 100,000 people.
Common criminal code violations vary in degree of severity from everything to minor drug offences and traffic tickets to drinking and driving and murder. Criminal lawyer Frank Retar has defended several individuals in the Windsor area and has been kind enough to join us to answer some of the common questions those individuals have regarding criminal offences.
Do all individuals who have been charged with a criminal offence need a lawyer?
FR: If you’ve been charged with a criminal offence there are many reasons to hire a lawyer. Lawyers can help you navigate the criminal court system and understand your rights. They can provide a reality check, valuable expert advice and give you piece of mind knowing that your well being is protected by an experienced professional.
What are the possible consequences of being found guilty of a criminal offence?
FR: The consequences to being found guilty typically fall into two categories: Outcomes without a Criminal Record and Outcomes with a Criminal Record. The consequences of being found guilty with Outcomes with a Criminal Record include: fine, suspended sentence, conditional sentence, intermittent sentence and custodial sentence.
What is a criminal record?
FR: A criminal record is a record of a person’s criminal history, generally used by potential employers, lenders etc. to assess his or her trustworthiness. The information included in a criminal record varies between countries and even between jurisdictions within a country. In most cases it lists all non-expunged criminal offenses and can also include traffic offenses.
What should an individual bring with them to prepare for their initial lawyer meeting?
FR:It’s important that you bring all documents you received from the police or the prosecutor. Any other relevant documents, photos and witness information should also be brought to the meeting.
When should I speak to a lawyer?
FR: Many criminal cases have important court and filing deadlines so it’s important to speak to a criminal lawyer as soon as possible so you can quickly and efficiently navigate the legal jargon and nuances of the criminal system. The earlier you get a lawyer on your side, the more likely they will be able to help you. Memories fade and physical evidence disappears so don’t wait, call a criminal lawyer today to get the advice and support you need.