How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Ely Your Own Question
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 102144
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
Type Your Criminal Law Question Here...
Ely is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I was arrested vandalism in Los Angeles. I have no previous

Customer Question

I was arrested for felony vandalism in Los Angeles. I have no previous convictions as an adult except a DUI 10 years ago. I was taken to the local police station and booked. My bail was set at $20,000. I paid a bondsman $2,000 to get out (it was Friday morning and I would have been there till Tuesday). I cannot afford and attorney so I will be using a public defender.I am wondering what a likely sentence is. Is there anything I can do to prepare for court?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: (A) This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms; and (B) please wait to rate until I ask you to do so. It may take a few replies for me to be able to render an answer. I will let you know when I do.

I am very sorry to hear about this situation. First of all, understand that the first hearing is generally only going to be an arraignment, meaning that there is unlikely to be any decision made for the matter. Arraignment means pleading guilty or not guilty and of course, one wants to plead not guilty.

Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

Pleading not guilty then sets for a a trial track.

Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

Then, the matter will be reset several times and the Defendant can either take a plea deal, or, take chances at trial.

Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

There is really nothing that can be done to prepare for course per se on a FIRST appearance.

Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

As for penalties

Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

Up to one year in a county jail, and/or a maximum fine of ten thousand dollars, or, up to fifty thousand dollars if the amount of the damage was $10,000 or more.

​However, for persons with no criminal history, the prosecutor is likely to make a plea deal involving no jail time and a fine, and possibly even no conviction. Good luck.

I hope this helps and clarifies. Gentle Reminder: Use the SEND or REPLY button to keep chatting, or please RATE when finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating. Kindly rate my answer as one of TOP THREE FACES/STARS and then SUBMIT, as this is how I get credit for my time with you. Rating my answer the bottom two faces/stars or failing to submit the rating does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith.