What is an Arrest Warrant?
Connecticut police can apply for an arrest warrant after conducting an investigation into a crime or suspected crime. This must first be signed by a Connecticut prosecutor and then a Connecticut judge before the suspect gets arrested. Once its signed, it becomes “active” and you can be asked to voluntarily surrender, picked up by police, or arrested during something as simple as a traffic or cell phone stop.
What is Probable Cause in Connecticut?
As any of the best Connecticut criminal defense lawyers can explain, probable cause is a nebulous legal term meaning that in light of the totality of a suspected crime’s circumstances, police believe there is a reasonable likelihood that a crime was committed and that you are the person who committed it. For example, if the police pull you over for a DUI and you fail the standardized field sobriety tests, they likely have probable cause to arrest you.
Are Arrest Warrants Always Required in Connecticut?
No. In fact most arrests in Connecticut don’t involve arrest warrants. If police respond to a crime scene and have probable cause to arrest you, or you commit a crime right in front of them, they can arrest you at the crime scene, without a warrant. Although this is technically legal, you still have certain constitutional rights and it is important to make sure those rights are not violated.
What Happens if I’m Arrested Without a Warrant?
If you have been arrested and jailed without an arrest warrant, the court must make a judicial finding of probable cause for your arrest. This requires a brief hearing before a Superior Court judge. During this hearing, the judge will review the police report and / or affidavits to determine whether or not probable cause existed. This is typically a non-adversarial hearing, meaning the judge will consider only what is submitted by the prosecutor and you and your lawyer will not be allowed to present evidence or call witnesses.
Contact a Connecticut Criminal Lawyer Today
If you were arrested without a warrant, any top Connecticut criminal attorney will tell you it is critical to make sure your rights were not violated. Connecticut police sometimes get it wrong. All wrong.
The team of criminal defense attorneys at Mark Sherman Law have been helping Connecticut clients fight warrantless arrests—and getting them dismissed—for over 20 years. Check out what prior clients have to say about working with us on the certified Avvo.com website, and then give us a call at 203-358-4700 to schedule a consultation.