In Massachusetts, in order for police to charge a person with a misdemeanor committed away from his or her presence, other than domestic assault and battery, he or she must apply for a complaint at a local court. Police cannot later arrest individuals for misdemeanors allegedly committed away from their presence, with the exception of domestic assault and battery. Even if a misdemeanor is committed in the presence of a police officer, this process is sometimes followed instead of arresting and formally arraigning an individual on misdemeanor charges.
Contact our Franklin clerk's hearing attorneys at Wood & Gresham, P.C., for a free consultation.
Entitled To A Clerk's Hearing
When police apply for a complaint at the local court, the person charged is entitled to a clerk's hearing. In Massachusetts, a clerk's hearing, sometimes called a "clerk magistrate's hearing" or a "show cause hearing," is used to determine if there exists sufficient evidence or reasonable cause to warrant further legal prosecution.
Reasons For A Clerk's Hearing
There are different situations where someone may be called in for a clerk's hearing. Common misdemeanors that result in clerk's hearings include charges such as fake ID, motor vehicle offenses, shoplifting, simple assault, disorderly conduct, OUI, trespassing, and larceny.
Importance Of A Clerk's Hearing
A clerk's hearing is a pivotal initial stage of a misdemeanor charge. If a complaint stands and is issued against an individual, that person's criminal record will feature the misdemeanor charge. In this case, the charge would appear in any background check. This means that any current or future employer may be able to see the charge. However, the clerk's hearing is also an important opportunity to avoid the complaint being issued against you and to keep a criminal record free of charges. In order to keep a complaint from not issuing against you, and keeping your criminal record clean, experienced and savvy legal help from an experienced lawyer is needed.
Contact Our Wrentham And Foxborough Clerk Magistrate Attorneys
Call 508-384-2008 to contact Wood & Gresham, P.C., to discuss your representation if you are facing criminal charges. Let us use our unique experience to help you avoid all types of consequences whenever possible. We offer a free initial consultation.