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What to know if you are a first-time offender

On Behalf of | Jul 13, 2022 | Criminal Defense

Getting arrested is a scary experience, particularly if it is the first time for you to go through this experience. Regardless of whether or not you are guilty of the charge, there are some basic guidelines that all people under arrest or awaiting trial should be aware of.

Here are some things to know if you are a first-time offender in Montana.

Do not resist arrest

It may be tempting to resist an arrest, especially if you did not commit the crime someone accuses you of doing. However, resisting arrest can make matters worse and may even lead to a charge of its own.

You may avoid jail time

One of the most alarming questions after an arrest is whether or not you will spend time in jail. This, of course, depends on the crime and whether a court finds you guilty. However, many first-time offenders of minor crimes end up only having to pay a fine or do community service. This is not guaranteed, but being cooperative during your arrest will help.

Keep in mind that even if your sentence does not involve spending time in jail, you may have to stay in jail for a short amount of time after the arrest. For example, after a public intoxication arrest, spending the night in jail gives you a chance to sober up and avoid getting into more trouble while intoxicated.

When you know what to expect after an arrest, you can help preserve your freedom and reputation as much as possible.