Arrest Process for a DC Gun Offense

A lawyer can help advise you throughout the arrest process for a DC gun offense. They can help you avoid any common missteps or self-incrimination. In order to maximize the likelihood of a desirable outcome, contact a distinguished firearm attorney as soon as possible in order to be building the strongest possible defense.

Arrest Procedure

Following the arrest process for a DC gun offense, the police transfer the person to the precinct in which the person is located, the Metropolitan Police Department because there are so many police agencies in the District such as the Capitol Police, Secret Service uniform police, or Park Police that can make an arrest.

On some occasions, the officer takes the person to the Metropolitan Police Department station. However, sometimes they the person is taken to their own district station depending on where they are located.

The person is in handcuffs, in the car or the van, and taken to a police station where the officers do a thorough search of the person’s property and of their person to make sure they are not bringing any weapons or paraphernalia into the police station or into custody.

What Will Law Enforcement Ask For?

The officers get information from the person including their name, address, date of birth and social security number.  After gathering the information, they take the person’s picture and fingerprints. The person is placed in a jail cell until they are processed. When someone has a misdemeanor charge, the authorities might release them with a citation to come back to court. The police return the person’s property unless there is something the authorities want to hold as evidence. It is kept and logged as evidence. With a gun case, the person is taken to court so a judge can determine the release conditions, whether the person is held or released.

Contacting an Attorney from Jail

In the District of Columbia and many jurisdictions, the police are not under any mandate to give a person a phone call from the police station. Particularly in the District of Columbia, the police are not required to give a person a phone call from the police station if they are holding the person in custody to go to court. The person is transported from the police station at 300 Indiana Avenue, NW, the police headquarters building next to the Superior Court at 500 Indiana Avenue, NW.

The Central Cell Block is located in the basement of the police building. Anyone held pending a hearing before the judge is brought to the Central Cell Block that is not necessarily equipped to have a defendant make a phone call.

The ability for a person to contact their attorney from jail largely depends on the fairness of the police officers on duty. When someone is cooperative with police, the police may allow that person to use their own cell phone to call an attorney or family member. They might let the person use a phone from the police station to call an attorney or family member. It is at the discretion of the police.

What are the Immediate Opportunities for Counsel?

When someone is involved in the arrest process for a DC gun offense, their first opportunity to talk to an attorney is when they are brought to court from Central Cell Block the next day. They are assigned a Criminal Justice Act (CJA) attorney or someone from the public defender service who is appointed initially to represent all defendants being held in custody and brought into court who have not had an opportunity to hire their own counsel.

How an Attorney Can Help

After going through the arrest process, and if necessary, the person has appointed counsel from the defender service counsel. While they are sitting in lockup, an attorney comes to talk with them, gets their basic information, and obtains as much information as they can about the circumstances surrounding the arrest. That might be the first opportunity the person has to talk to an attorney.

On the other hand, when someone is allowed to place a phone call to family or an attorney, that attorney can arrive at the courthouse already prepared to represent them in court. That may not happen; it is at the discretion of the police.

Overall, the sooner someone is able to begin working with an attorney, during or following the arrest process for a DC gun offense, the sooner they can begin building an adequate defense, working to achieve the best outcome possible.