Direct Information Arraignment
Most misdemeanor charges arise because the officer witnesses the crime. For example, if someone is caught with drug paraphernalia during a traffic stop, they might be charged with possession of the drug paraphernalia based on the fact that the officer witnesses the possession and it occurred in his presence.
Likewise, for a DUI case, the officer is able to make an arrest only if he witnesses the crime being committed by seeing the defendant behind the wheel while impaired.
But what happens if the officer doesn’t witness the crime and the crime is not on a list of misdemeanors that constitute an exception to the arrest warrant requirement? In those cases, the officer will forward his report to the State Attorney’s Office to determine whether the charges should be “direct filed.”
If you were told that the report has been taken and the matter will be forwarded to the State Attorney’s Office, then you should hire a criminal defense attorney to represent you during this part of the process.
If you do nothing, then you might be served later with a summons to appear in court. The direct file information is most common for charges like criminal mischief and simple battery.
For example, in a simple battery case charged as a misdemeanor, if the alleged victim wants to prosecute, then a prosecutor with the State Attorney’s Office might issue a summons that puts you o notice that you are required to appear in court for a direct information arraignment. The notice will list the judge assigned to the case along with the time and date of the arraignment.
If you fail to appear at the direct file arraignment, then the court is authorized to issue a capias for your arrest.
Attorney for the Direct File Arraignment in Tampa, FL
If you were served with a notice to appear for a direct file arraignment after a direct file information was filed at the courthouse in Tampa or Plant City in Hillsborough County, FL, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Sammis Law Firm. Our main office is downtown. We represent clients throughout the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit in Hillsborough County, FL.
Call 813-250-0500 for a free consultation.
This article was last updated on Tuesday, April 6, 2021.