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WE PROVIDE WHITE GLOVE SERVICE TO CLIENTS
WHO WANT MORE FROM THEIR ATTORNEY

The Spodek Law Group understands how delicate high-profile cases can be, and has a strong track record of getting positive outcomes. Our lawyers service a clientele that is nationwide. With offices in both LA and NYC, and cases all across the country - Spodek Law Group is a top tier law firm.

Todd Spodek is a second generation attorney with immense experience. He has many years of experience handling 100’s of tough and hard to win trials. He’s been featured on major news outlets, such as New York Post, Newsweek, Fox 5 New York, South China Morning Post, Insider.com, and many others.

In 2022, Netflix released a series about one of Todd’s clients: Anna Delvey/Anna Sorokin.

Why Clients Choose Spodek Law Group

The reason is simple: clients want white glove service, and lawyers who can win. Every single client who works with the Spodek Law Group is aware that the attorney they hire could drastically change the outcome of their case. Hiring the Spodek Law Group means you’re taking your future seriously. Our lawyers handle cases nationwide, ranging from NYC to LA. Our philosophy is fair and simple: our nyc criminal lawyers only take on clients who we know will benefit from our services.

We’re selective about the clients we work with, and only take on cases we know align with our experience – and where we can make a difference. This is different from other law firms who are not invested in your success nor care about your outcome.

If you have a legal issue, call us for a consultation.
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FAQs: Answered by a Top Rated Criminal Defense Lawyer in Phoenix

By Spodek Law Group | October 3, 2023
(Last Updated On: October 3, 2023)

FAQs: Answered by a Top Rated Criminal Defense Lawyer in Phoenix

Hey there! My name is John Smith and I’m a criminal defense lawyer here in Phoenix, Arizona. I know that dealing with criminal charges can be super stressful and confusing, so I wanted to take some time to answer some of the most frequently asked questions I get from new clients. I’ve been practicing law for over 15 years and have a ton of experience defending folks accused of all types of crimes – from misdemeanors to serious felonies. My goal is to explain things in a simple, easy-to-understand way so you can feel empowered and informed during this difficult time.

Why Do I Need a Criminal Defense Lawyer?

Great question! Hiring a criminal defense lawyer is so important because the legal system can be really complicated to navigate on your own. As your attorney, I handle all aspects of your case so you can focus on your normal life. I will investigate the charges, meet with prosecutors, file motions, negotiate with the district attorney’s office, and defend you in court if we can’t get the charges reduced or dismissed. My job is to protect your rights, build the strongest defense possible, and get you the best possible outcome. Without an experienced lawyer on your side, it’s really tough to stand up to the power of the government who is trying to convict you. So having a knowledgeable and aggressive defense attorney levels the playing field and gives you the best chance at beating the charges.

What Happens at the Initial Consultation?

The first meeting with a new client is called the initial consultation. This is a chance for us to sit down together, usually in my office, so I can learn the details of your unique situation. I’ll ask you to tell me exactly what happened and then I’ll explain the potential charges you’re facing. Next, I’ll let you know your rights under the law and start building a defense strategy. I’m also going to be honest about the strengths and weaknesses of your case so you understand what we’re up against. My goal is to gather all the facts, start formulating a plan, explain the legal process, set expectations, and make you feel comfortable with me as your defense lawyer. This initial consultation usually lasts about an hour. I don’t charge any fees for it and there’s no obligation to hire me afterwards if you decide to look at other attorneys. It’s simply a chance for us to meet so I can evaluate your case.

What Information Do I Need to Provide My Lawyer?

After you hire me as your criminal defense attorney, I’ll need you to provide some important information and documents to build the strongest case possible. This includes:

  • Details about exactly what happened during the alleged crime
  • Names and contact information of any witnesses
  • Any evidence you have like receipts, photos, videos, etc.
  • Copies of all the paperwork from your arrest and charges
  • Your full criminal record and history

Basically, I need to know all the facts, documents, and background information relevant to your case. This allows me to construct the best defense arguments and strategy. The more info I have, the better job I can do protecting your rights and future. Please be totally honest and transparent with me – anything you say is confidential under attorney-client privilege.

What are Common Defense Strategies?

The defense strategy I recommend really depends on the unique circumstances of your case. But some of the most common ones I use are:

  • Challenging the evidence and police procedures – If there are issues with how evidence was collected or how the investigation was conducted, I can file motions to suppress evidence or statements.
  • Alternative explanations – We may be able to show the jury plausible alternative scenarios that create reasonable doubt about your guilt.
  • Attacking witness credibility – If a witness against you has credibility issues or bias, I can expose those on cross-examination.
  • Focusing on your constitutional rights – Making sure your rights were not violated at any point and the police followed proper protocols.
  • Negotiating with the DA – Seeing if we can get charges reduced or dismissed through plea bargaining negotiations.

My approach is tailored to the specifics of each case and exploiting every opportunity I see to get charges dropped or reduced. The goal is avoiding conviction and minimizing penalties if that’s not possible.

What Factors Determine My Sentence?

Assuming your case does end in a conviction – either through plea deal or trial – there are several important factors that influence your criminal sentence. These include:

  • Your prior record – More extensive histories usually mean harsher sentences.
  • The actual charges – More serious felonies have longer sentences.
  • Acceptance of responsibility – Admitting fault may lead to lighter punishment.
  • Sentencing guidelines – Ranges dictated by state law.
  • Aggravating circumstances – Details that make the crime worse.
  • Mitigating circumstances – Details that make the crime less serious.
  • The judge’s discretion – Some judges are known to give lighter sentences.

As your attorney, I’ll present mitigating factors and argue for the lightest sentence under the guidelines. But the details of your specific case are the biggest determinants of how much time you’ll serve if convicted. That’s why mounting an aggressive defense is so crucial.

What are Common Misdemeanor Charges?

Some of the most common misdemeanors I see in Phoenix include:

  • DUI – Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Assault – Threats or violence against another person.
  • Theft – Stealing money or property valued under $1,000.
  • Drug possession – Having small amounts of illegal drugs.
  • Disorderly conduct – Disturbing the peace behaviors.
  • Trespassing – Entering property without permission.
  • Reckless driving – Driving dangerously and carelessly.

Misdemeanors are “lesser” crimes that carry maximum jail terms of 1 year. But they still carry fines, probation, and other penalties that can seriously impact your life, so don’t take them lightly. Having an experienced misdemeanor defense lawyer is essential.

What are the Steps After an Arrest?

Being arrested starts a complex legal process that includes:

  1. Booking – This involves fingerprinting, searches, and paperwork at the police station.
  2. Appearance before a judge – For setting bail conditions and appointing a lawyer if you can’t afford one.
  3. Review of charges – The DA reviews police reports and decides on final charges.
  4. Arraignment – You enter a plea at your first court hearing for the charges.
  5. Preliminary hearings – Where prosecutors must show evidence for the case to proceed.
  6. Motions – Your lawyer can file motions to suppress evidence, dismiss charges, etc.
  7. Plea bargaining – Negotiating with the DA to reduce charges.
  8. Trial – If no plea deal, the case goes before a judge and/or jury.

Having an attorney to guide you through these critical steps is so important for protecting your rights.

What Should I do if I’m Innocent?

I totally understand the frustration, fear and anger you feel if you’ve been wrongly accused. It’s a terrible situation. Unfortunately, just claiming innocence is usually not enough on its own to beat criminal charges. Even if you know you didn’t commit the crime, the police and prosecutors still believe they have a valid case against you. So here are some tips if you find yourself in this scenario:

  • Remain calm and don’t resist arrest – This only gives them more reason to hold you.
  • Say as little as possible – Anything you say can be used against you, so avoid talking.
  • Hire a defense lawyer immediately – An attorney is key to navigating the system and proving your innocence.
  • Follow your lawyer’s advice – They know how to build a strong defense case.
  • Provide alibis, witnesses, receipts – Any concrete evidence that shows your innocence.
  • Consider taking a lie detector test – To scientifically prove your truthfulness.

With an aggressive defense focused on actual innocence, many of my clients have beaten charges and avoided wrongful convictions. So stay strong and know that the truth can still prevail in court.

What are the Best Defenses for DUI Charges?

Some of the most effective strategies I use to defend clients facing DUI charges include:

  • Challenge the traffic stop – If there was no probable cause, evidence can be suppressed.
  • Dispute breathalyzer accuracy – The machines have margins of error I can highlight.
  • Question field sobriety tests – These have subjective criteria that can be debated.
  • Raise medical conditions – Health issues like diabetes can mimic signs of intoxication.
  • Argue rising blood alcohol level – Your BAC may have been lower when driving than when tested.
  • Attack sloppy police procedures – Procedural mistakes can get the whole case tossed.

Every DUI case has weaknesses we can exploit. My goal is raising enough doubt to either get the charges dropped or win a not guilty verdict at trial.

What are the Penalties for Drug Possession Charges?

Like most criminal offenses, the penalties for drug possession depend on the amount, the type of drug, and your criminal history. Some general Arizona guidelines for simple possession are:

  • Less than 2 lbs marijuana – Max 6 months jail and $2,500 fine
  • Less than 2 grams meth/heroin – 4 years prison and $150,000 fine
  • Less than 1 gram cocaine – 2.5 years prison and $150,000 fine
  • Prior convictions – Penalties increase dramatically

These are just baseline ranges – the specifics of your case could mean even more serious sentences. Having an attorney argue for treatment programs over jail time is often the best strategy.

What Happens if I Miss a Court Date?

Missing a scheduled court appearance is a very serious issue that can negatively impact your case in several ways:

  • Bench warrant – The judge may issue a warrant for your arrest.
  • Bond revocation – You can be detained without bail until trial.
  • New charges – Missing court is a separate crime that can be charged.
  • Presumption of guilt – The court will view you as not taking things seriously.
  • Harsher plea deals – Prosecutors may offer less leniency now.

That’s why you should do everything in your power to make it to all hearings. But if something comes up, call my office immediately so we can notify the court and reschedule. Never just skip court or you’ll make a bad situation much worse.

What Should I Do if I’m Arrested?

Being arrested can be scary, but following these tips will help protect your rights:

  1. Remain silent – Only provide your basic identifying information.
  2. Don’t resist officers – Comply with instructions to avoid additional charges.
  3. Don’t consent to searches – Politely decline and say you do not consent.
  4. Ask for a lawyer – Repeat this over and over starting immediately.
  5. Don’t answer questions – Be courteous but do not talk about the allegations against you.
  6. Don’t make statements – Anything you say will be used against you.
  7. Don’t discuss the case – The police may monitor conversations between inmates.
  8. Bond out if you can – Hiring a lawyer is easier when you’re not in jail
  9. Contact family and friends – Let them know you’ve been arrested so they can support you.
  10. Document injuries – If you were harmed during arrest, get medical records and photos.
  11. Gather evidence – If you have proof of your innocence, provide it to your lawyer.
  12. Review the charges – Understand exactly what crimes you’re accused of.
  13. Stay positive – Keep your spirits up and focus on beating the case.
  14. The period right after an arrest is critical for building your defense. Don’t panic, remain calm, and take proactive steps like hiring an experienced criminal lawyer. The legal process is complex, but an aggressive attorney can guide you through each stage while protecting your rights.

    What are Common Felony Charges?

    Some of the most common felonies I see defendants facing here in Arizona include:

    • Assault – Violent attacks causing serious injuries.
    • Robbery – Using force or threats to steal property.
    • Burglary – Illegally entering a building to commit a crime.
    • Theft – Stealing money, cars, or property worth over $1,000.
    • Fraud – Deceitful schemes for financial gain.
    • Sex crimes – Rape, molestation, public indecency.
    • Homicide – Murder, manslaughter, negligent homicide.

    Felonies are more serious crimes punishable by over 1 year in prison. They are prosecuted aggressively, so having an experienced felony defense lawyer is critical.

    How Can I Get Charges Dropped or Dismissed?

    There are a few main ways we can potentially get criminal charges against you dropped or dismissed:

    • Suppress evidence – If evidence was obtained illegally, we can argue to exclude it.
    • Raise reasonable doubt – Poke holes in the prosecutor’s case to undermine it.
    • Negotiate dismissal – Make a deal to get charges dropped in exchange for a plea.
    • Show lack of evidence – Force the state to admit they lack proof to convict.
    • Present affirmative defenses – e.g. self-defense, insanity, entrapment.
    • Identify procedural errors – Mistakes in your arrest or charges may invalidate them.

    An aggressive pre-trial motions strategy is key to getting charges thrown out before a trial. My goal is always full dismissal, but if that fails, I’ll work relentlessly to get charges reduced as much as possible.

    What Should I Expect if I Go to Trial?

    Here’s a basic overview of the trial process if we cannot get your criminal charges dismissed:

    1. Jury selection – We question and choose jurors who seem unbiased.
    2. Opening statements – The prosecution and defense outline their case theories.
    3. Witness testimony – Both sides present testimony from witnesses.
    4. Cross-examination – Attorneys try to undermine the other side’s witnesses.
    5. Expert testimony – Experts like scientists and doctors may testify.
    6. Physical evidence – Items like photos or documents are presented.
    7. Closing arguments – Final chance to argue why your side should win.
    8. Jury deliberation – The jury meets privately to discuss the case and evidence.
    9. Verdict – The jury acquits or convicts on each charge.

    This is a general timeline – the specifics vary case-by-case. As your lawyer, I’ll make sure you understand the full process and are prepared at every stage. My goal is to highlight reasonable doubt so the jury returns a not guilty verdict.

    Why are Repeat Offenders Punished More Harshly?

    Those with prior records tend to face much stiffer punishments for a few key reasons:

    • Perceived as higher risk – Defendants with criminal histories are viewed as more likely to re-offend.
    • Viewed as incorrigible – The system feels repeat offenders cannot be rehabilitated.
    • Punished for not learning – Courts feel harsher sentences will deter future crimes.
    • Guideline enhancements – Sentencing policies impose mandatory extra punishments.
    • Fewer mitigating factors – It’s harder to argue for leniency with an extensive record.

    That’s why avoiding a conviction is so critical the first time you face charges. My job is humanizing you and highlighting mitigating factors so the court sees more than just your rap sheet.

    What are Common Defenses for Assault Charges?

    Some of the most effective legal defenses I frequently use for assault charges include:

    • Self-defense – Using reasonable force to protect yourself or others.
    • Defense of property – Protecting your home or possessions.
    • Lack of intent – The actions were an accident, not intentional.
    • Mistaken identity – You did not actually commit the assault.
    • False accusations – The alleged victim is lying or mistaken.
    • Mental illness – You have a condition that impacted your behavior.

    Assault cases often boil down to self-defense claims and the defendant’s state of mind. As your attorney, I’ll aggressively argue that your actions do not meet the legal definition of criminal assault.

    What are Ways to Get a Felony Reduced to a Misdemeanor?

    Some of the main strategies I use to get felony charges reduced to misdemeanors include:

    • Plea bargaining – Negotiating with prosecutors to reduce the charges.
    • Diversion programs – Completing rehab or community service in exchange for reduction.
    • Providing substantial assistance – Giving info to police about other crimes.
    • Presenting mitigating factors – Highlighting reasons the crime wasn’t serious.
    • Statute of limitations issues – The time window for a felony may have expired.
    • Attacking weak evidence – Forcing the state to make concessions due to a weak case.

    The goal is avoiding the severe consequences of a felony conviction. Even if we can’t beat the charges fully, I’ll work tirelessly to get them bumped down to a misdemeanor level.

    Conclusion

    I hope this gives you a helpful overview of the criminal justice process and answers some of your key questions. Dealing with criminal charges is scary, but having an experienced defense lawyer on your side makes all the difference. My team and I are here to support and guide you each step of the way while aggressively fighting for the best possible outcome. If you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to my office. We’re always happy to help!

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I was searching for a law firm with some power to help me deal with a warrant in New York . After 6 days I decided to go with Spodek Law Group. It helped that This law firm is well respected by not only the top law firms in New York , but the DA , Judge as well. I...

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It was my good fortune to retain Spodek Law Group for representation for my legal needs. From the beginning, communication was prompt and thorough. Todd, Kenneth and Alex were the first people I worked with and they all made me feel comfortable and confident that the team was going to work hard for me. Everything was explained and any concerns...

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After meeting with several law firms, I chose the Spodek Law Group not only for their professionalism and experience, but for the personal attention given to me right from the initial consultation. It is important to recognize how crucial having the right legal team is when faced with potentially life altering events that impact families and the lives of loved...

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