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I'm charged with animal cruelty but didn't do anything

I'm charged with animal...

I'm charged with animal cruelty but didn't do anything wrong. I spoke to the police without a lawyer now the county attorney journal has filed misdeamnor charges. what are the options?

Lawyer's Assistant: Do you have any upcoming court dates on the animal cruelty charges?

None yet I would like to mediate out of court

Lawyer's Assistant: In what state did the animal cruelty occur?

Maryland

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Well the whole premise is based on the fact the dog was left outside a lot. animal control has been to house numerous times and they always said it was fine since there was a dog door.

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Answered in 23 minutes by:
3/20/2018
LegalKnowledge
LegalKnowledge, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 30,983
Experience: 10+ years handling Legal, Real Estate, Criminal Law, Family Law, Traffic matters.
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Hi! I will be the professional that will be helping you today. I look forward to providing you with information to help with your question and concern

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Good morning. So do you want to resolve this and take a plea or fight this and go to trial?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Upon reading the charges it appears that this would be a misdemeanor. I cannot have any misdemeanor charges on my record. I can negotiate something If the charges are dropped.

Thank you for the reply. If you are a first time offender, you can ask the State if they would allow you to enter into a diversion program. A diversion program would allow you to get the case dismissed and keep your record clean. It normally requires you to stay out of trouble, for a period of 3-6 months, pay fines and court costs and perform community service. If you do it all, the end result is normally a dismissal. These type of programs are set up to allow first time offenders to learn from their mistake and keep their records clean. It can be something that you ask about when you appear and the State will determine if you are eligible. If this is not an option, you need to see if they would allow you to plea to a lesser and if they will amend this but if not you need to go to trial and make the State prove the charge against you, beyond a reasonable doubt.

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I just wanted to follow up and see if you had any other questions or needed me to clarify something. I am here to help, so please let me know. Thanks!

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Can this be done out of court?

If you retain an attorney, they can contact the prosecutor and speak with them ahead of time to try and work out a plea deal but if it is accepted, it needs to be done in court.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
I would like to stay out of court and see if I can get the diversion type of a deal.

Yes but this all has to be finalized in court, so you would have to appear at some point. If you retain a criminal defense attorney, they can start working on this now, so when the court date arrives, it is all set up and just needs to be accepted, if it is an option.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
was this problem created by me talking to the police directly instead of an attorney?
It is possible that you made admissions and they had evidence and a basis to file charges as a result of you speaking with them. A person should never speak with the police unless legal counsel is present as their statements and admissions can be used against them.
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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
thanks for your help. I think I have created problem. SO I need to look for a criminal defense attorney?
that is correct. This is a criminal charge and a criminal defense attorney needs to be hired. Thank you again and your are very welcome. If you have not already I kindly just ask that you rate my help at the top at this time just so the site will provide me with the proper credit for my help and time.
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LegalKnowledge, Attorney
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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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