Asked in Criminal Law for Georgia

Q: Can D.A add charges to indictment that I was not arrested for

Was arrested for misdemeanor assault, State added felony false imprisonment to indictment.

No arrest warrant executed by law enforcement for felony, yet only misdemeanor warrant exists. Can Da legally do this

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1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In criminal proceedings, it is possible for a District Attorney (D.A.) to add charges to an indictment that were not part of the initial arrest. This can happen if, during the investigation or preparation for trial, additional evidence comes to light that supports more serious or additional charges.

The process of an indictment involves a grand jury, which reviews evidence presented by the prosecutor. If they find sufficient evidence, they can issue an indictment for charges, even if these differ from the original charges at the time of arrest.

For your case, where a misdemeanor assault charge led to an indictment for felony false imprisonment, it suggests that the prosecution presented evidence to the grand jury that supported the more serious charge. The lack of a separate arrest warrant for the felony charge is not unusual in this context. Once an indictment is issued, the original arrest on the lesser charge often suffices for legal proceedings to move forward on the more serious charges.

If you're facing this situation, it's important to seek legal advice and representation. An experienced attorney can help navigate the complexities of your case, including challenging any new charges if they believe there's insufficient evidence or procedural issues. Remember, every case is unique and the legal strategy should be tailored to the specific circumstances of your situation.

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