Arrested in California

Being arrested is a traumatic and confusing experience, especially if it’s your first time. It’s essential to know your rights, what to expect during the arrest and booking process, and how to prepare for your court appearance. Here are 12 things you need to know if you are ever arrested in California.

You Have the Right to Remain Silent

Under the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, you have the right to remain silent when you are arrested. This means that you do not have to answer any questions asked by the police, including questions about your name or address. To choose this option, simply state “I choose to remain silent.”

You Have the Right to an Attorney

Your right to an attorney¬†is guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. This means that if you are facing criminal charges, you have the right to have an attorney represent you and protect your rights during all phases of the legal process, including interrogations, hearings, and trials. It’s essential to have an attorney to protect your rights and provide you with legal advice.

You Can Refuse a Search

The police cannot search you or your property without a warrant or your consent. If the police ask to search you or your property, you can refuse the search. However, if the police have a warrant, they can search you and your property regardless of your refusal.

You Have the Right to Make a Phone Call

You have the right to make a phone call after you are arrested. This call is typically to a family member, friend, or attorney. The police are required to provide you with access to a telephone as soon as you are booked into jail.

The Booking Process

The booking process involves being fingerprinted, photographed, and having your personal information recorded. You will also be searched, and any personal items you have will be taken from you and stored. The booking process can take several hours to complete.

Bail and Release

Bail is a monetary amount set by the court that you can pay to be released from jail while you await your court date. The amount of bail is based on the charges against you, your criminal record, and other factors. If you cannot afford to pay bail, you can ask the court to lower the amount or ask a Los Angeles bail bonds expert for assistance.


The arraignment is your first court appearance, where you will be formally charged with a crime and enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. At the arraignment, you will also have the opportunity to request a public defender if you cannot afford an attorney.

Pretrial Hearings

If you have not reached a plea agreement, the next step is a pretrial hearing. During this hearing, your attorney and the prosecutor will present evidence and make arguments about your case.


If there is enough evidence to proceed to trial, your case will go to trial, where a jury will hear the evidence and determine your guilt or innocence.


If the verdict is that you are guilty, the judge will deliver your sentence. The sentence may include fines, imprisonment, or both. The sentence will depend on the crime you were convicted of and your criminal record.


If you are found guilty and sentenced, you have the right to appeal the decision. An appeal is a request to a higher court to review the decision of a lower court. The higher court will review the evidence and determine if there were any errors made during your trial.

Post-Conviction Relief

If you have already been convicted and sentenced, you may still have options for post-conviction relief. Post-conviction relief refers to the process of seeking relief from a conviction after a judgment of guilt has already been entered. This can include various forms of relief, such as appeals, writs of habeas corpus, or motions for a new trial, depending on the jurisdiction and the grounds for relief. The goal of post-conviction relief is to correct errors that occurred during the original trial or to raise new evidence that was not available at the time of trial.

Bottom Line

Being arrested can be a stressful ordeal, but knowing your rights and what to expect during the arrest and booking process can help you navigate the process. It’s essential to have a clear understanding of your rights and the legal process to protect yourself and ensure the best possible outcome.

By Anurag Rathod

Anurag Rathod is an Editor of, who is passionate for app-based startup solutions and on-demand business ideas. He believes in spreading tech trends. He is an avid reader and loves thinking out of the box to promote new technologies.