Former Prosecutor. Powerful Defense Advocate. Certified in the Area of Criminal Law

Citation, Arrest or Arrest Warrant

Understanding CA Law with a Tulare County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Depending on the crime being charged, a defendant may be cited to appear in court for less serious crimes, arrested and held pending an appearance in court for serious crimes where the police know where to find the defendant, or, in cases where the defendant is missing, an arrest warrant may be issued.


What to do if you have been cited to appear in court:

  • Decide whether to hire an attorney—it is recommended you do this as soon as possible
  • Come to court dressed professionally
  • Be on time and be prepared to wait. If you have been cited for an infraction and fail to appear in court, an admission may be entered on your behalf, your fine may increase, and your license may be suspended. If you have been cited for any other type of crime and fail to appear you may be arrested.

Reason for wanting an attorney at this stage: Most cases where a citation is given can be settled, or "plea-bargained", by an attorney who will advocate on your behalf and ensure you the best deal possible.


What to do if you have been arrested:

  • Decide whether to hire an attorney.
  • Don't say anything. Law enforcement professionals take classes to teach them how to trick people into saying something that will hurt them later on. Lie to the police and you may see that lie thrown back in your face at trial.

Reason for wanting an attorney at this stage: If you have been arrested bail will usually be set and a date for arraignment (a plea of guilty or not guilty) will be set. In addition to advocating on your behalf in the case of a plea-bargain at arraignment, an attorney may be able to argue to have your bail reduced or eliminated at this early stage.

Arrest Warrant

What to do if there is a warrant out for your arrest:

  • An arrest warrant is an order by the court for any law enforcement officer who finds you to arrest you and place you in the county jail.
  • If you know there is a warrant out for your arrest you are legally obligated to turn yourself in to law enforcement.
  • Anyone who helps to hide you knowing that there is a warrant for your arrest may be charged with a crime.

Reason for wanting an attorney at this stage: An attorney can coordinate with law enforcement for you to give yourself up with the least amount of hassle and embarrassment. In addition, having an attorney on hand when you are arrested serves to protect your rights during the process.

Mr. Hagopian Knows What You Are Going Through, and He Is Committed to Getting You Through This Tough Time.

Request a Free Consultation Today.