The Jonesboro Law Offices of Joseph M. Todd is a very aggressive and experienced criminal law firm devoted to representing defendants charged with criminal violations. We pride ourselves in obtaining the best results possible for our clients. Because of our aggressive, integrity, honesty and professionalism we enjoy an excellent reputation throughout the legal community. We represent defendants throughout the state of Georgia and nationwide. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
At The Law Offices of Joseph M. Todd, our experienced attorneys take your case just as personally as you do. We devote ourselves to helping protect individuals accused of committing criminal offenses and to ensure that all the constitutional rights are protected.
The Law Offices of Joseph M. Todd leaves no stone unturned in order to represent a person charged with a crime to make sure that none of their rights are violated and the authorities have not wrongfully accused an innocent victim. We have the financial resources to take on both the state and federal government. Our special approach to handling these type of criminal cases enables our attorneys to monitor, update and deal with every issue for the successful resolution of our client’s criminal charges. All of our attorneys are highly experienced.
We are proud of our record representing persons charged with criminal violations in the state of Georgia and throughout the United States. One of the most important constitutional rights of any person charged with a criminal violation is the right to remain silent. The state and federal authorities have highly trained investigators and interrogators who are highly skilled in obtaining confessions or admissions from an unsuspecting person. Often times these experienced professionals can twist your words or get you to say something that may tend to incriminate yourself. Therefore, it is very important that you contact an experienced lawyer at The Law Offices of Joseph M. Todd immediately before you make any statement or say anything that could incriminate you or severely hinder your representation. Please call our offices at (770) 477-7878, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Your first call should be to our office to protect your rights.
A. Definition of Arrest:
An arrest has been defined as an order holding a person in custody until he answers a complaint. It is important to determine at what point an arrest has taken place. An arrest is accomplished whenever the liberty of an individual to come and go has been restrained.
B. Probable Cause Requirement:
An arrest either with or without a warrant may be made only when the arresting officer or citizen has probable cause to believe that a crime has been committed. Probable cause has been defined as a reasonable grounds for suspicion, as supported by circumstances sufficiently strong to warn a prudent or cautious man to believe that the person to be arrested committed or was committing the offense.
C. Warrant Requirement:
Unless an authorization exists to justify a warrantless arrest, the police officer must first obtain an arrest warrant.
D. Warrantless Arrests:
Under certain circumstances, police may affect a valid arrest without first obtaining a warrant. When a warrant is obtained, however, the police must have probable cause.
E. Exclusionary Rule:
The exclusionary rule is the term that is used in criminal procedure, refers to the exclusion of some kind of evidence in a judicial proceeding. As it applies to an arrest, if the arrest is illegal or invalid any items such as contraband (drugs, weapons, etc.) are not admissible in any proceeding against the accused. Therefore, evidence obtained against an accused may be excluded from any trial if the evidence is acquired as a result of an invalid or illegal search and seizure. This rule is very important because if the evidence was obtained in an illegal or invalid method then the evidence could be disallowed in any trial. If that happens in most cases the State may not have sufficient evidence to proceed with the charges and they will be dropped. Bear in mind that even if certain evidence is excluded that does not prevent the State from further prosecution of the charges. But the exclusion of evidence could weaken the State’s case and ultimately result in an acquittal of the accused.
F. Search and Seizure:
A search is a quest for information. The ransacking of a house, apartment, or vehicle generally is considered a search.
There is no search when an officer seizes what is in plain view or when the officer sees something generally used by or open to the public.
The act of taking and removing tangible personal property is a seizure.
Finally, it must be noted that the seizure of a person occurs not only in the case of an arrest, but when the person has been restrained and is not free to walk away.
There are certain areas of interest that are protected by the Fourth Amendment against governmental action.
The Fourth Amendment states that people shall “be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures.”
It is well recognized that the determination of whether or not probable cause exists to issue a search warrant must be made a neutral and detached magistrate. Seeing to obtain a search warrant can be initiated by any officer of this state or its political subdivisions charged with the duty of enforcing the criminal laws. The Fourth Amendment provides that “no warrant shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation.” The Georgia Constitution contains the same threshold requirement.
By statute, a warrant must be executed within 10 days from the time of issuance, and any warrant not executed within 10 days will be void. A warrant may be executed by any reasonable time within the 10 day. When it executed, the duplicate copy shall be left with the person from whom any articles are seized.
Georgia law provides that an officer in an execution of a search warrant may reasonably detain or search any person in the place at the time to protect himself from attack or to prevent the disposal or concealment of any instrument, articles, or anything particularly described in the warrant.
After the search has been completed, it is the duty of the officer to file a verified list of the items seized with the magistrate named in the warrant, or before a Court having jurisdiction.
G. The Results of an Illegal Search:
Material previously mentioned in the preceding section is in some reform. Please call our office if you have any specific questions whether or not the search is reasonable and whether or not there was probable cause. Generally, if a search or seizure is illegal, the articles obtained are not admissible in evidence. However, the aggrieved party must make a timely motion to suppress the evidence. The person who conducts an illegal search or seizure may be liable in damages to the aggrieved person.
Historically, Georgia confession has been regarded as a voluntary admission of guilt of every essential element of the crime involved, without including any legal excuse or justification. In order to be admissible, the confession must be made without being induced by another by the slightest hope of benefit or the lowest fear of injury.
To make a confession admissible, it must have been voluntarily made, without being induced by another by the slightest hope of benefit or the lowest fear of injury. Thus, according to the law in Georgia, there are three conditions which must exist before a pre-trial confession or admission is admissible in evidence at a criminal trial:
1. It must be made voluntarily. It must not be produced by or result from
2. the slightest hope of benefit or
3. the remotest fear of injury.
From a federal constitution standpoint, the essential elements of voluntariness is not to be regarded as being limited by the words “without being induced by another by the slightest hope of benefit or remotest fear of injury.” Voluntariness based upon the fatality of all the surrounding facts and circumstances in essential element of due process.
All admissions shall be scanned with care, confessions of guilt shall be received with great caution. A confession alone, uncorroborated by any other evidence shall not justify a conviction.
I. Miranda Warnings:
The case of Miranda v. Arizona handed down in 1966 remains one of the most important cases in the area of confessions.
In sum, it must be remembered that the Miranda warnings do not apply at all unless there are both 1 (custody) and 2 (interrogation). The suspect must have been given adequate warnings, and the suspect must have validly waived his right of silence.
Miranda warnings are commonly given by reading them from card which has been prepared for this purpose. Many officers in Georgia currently use Miranda warning card which contains the following material:
1. You have the right to remain silent
2. Anything you say can and will be used against you in the Court of law
3. You have the right to talk to a lawyer and have him present with you while you are being questioned
4. If you cannot afford to hire a lawyer, one will be appointed to represent you before any
questioning, if you wish
5. You can decide at any time to exercise these rights and not answer any questions or make any statements.
J. Pre-Trial Identification
A defendant may be identified in a number of ways, including but not limited to eye-witness identification, photographic identification, voice identification, handwriting identification, fingerprint and palm print identification, footprint identification and some other less commonly used methods of identification.
A line-up is distinguished from a show-up, a one-on-one identification, by the fact that a line-up requires the witness to identify the alleged perpetrator of a crime from among the number of persons while in a show-up or a one-on-one, the witness is shown only one person and in effect asked if this is the person. As previously mentioned, a show-up occurs when a witness views a single individual for purposes of identification. This means of identification is inherently or suggestive and has been widely condemned when used by law enforcement officers.
Defense counsel has the right to be present when his client in present in any kind of identification or after the initiation of the adversarial criminal proceedings. Conversely, there is no right to counsel at an identification before the initiation of the adversarial criminal proceedings.
II Right to an Attorney
A person who has been arrested needs to employ counsel as quickly as possible. If for financial reasons, he is unable to hire an attorney, it is the duty of the Court having jurisdiction of the case to appoint counsel. However, there is no right to appointment of counsel prior to the initiation of the adversarial judicial proceedings against the defendant. If you are arrested one of the most important first acts is to call us at (770) 477-7878.
Defense counsel will normally attempt to have his client released on bond if he is still in custody at the time counsel is employed.
While the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution states that bail shall not be excessive, it does not expressly provide that the defendant has the right to bail.
In the Georgia Constitution parallels the provisions of the federal Constitution concerning bail. Georgia laws provides that all offenses are bailable by a Court of inquiry except the following:
4. Aggravated Sodomy
5. Armed Robbery
6. Aircraft Hijacking
7. Aggravated Child Molestation
8. Manufacturing, Delivering, Dispencing, Administering, Selling or Possessing with intent to distribute and controlled substance classified under Schedules 1 or Schedule 2
9. Violating the Georgia code relating to trafficking cocaine or marijuana
10. Kidnapping, arson, aggravated assault, or burglary if the person, at the time the such person was charged, has recently been convicted of, was on probation or parole respective, or was on bail for kidnapping, arson, aggravated assault, burglary or one or more of the offenses in paragraphs 1-9 of the above section. Defenses named in paragraphs 1-10 above are not bailable unless the judge or Superior Court fixes the bond.
B. Posting Bond as Waiver of a Committal Hearing:
The Georgia Supreme Court has held that a person who is arrested and released on bond within the time provided by law is not entitled to a committal hearing.
C. Motion for Bond:
Various methods may be used in determining the amount of bond where there is an automatic right to post bond. The bond may be fixed by the Magistrate Court after the defendant is arrested and if a bond is not fixed prior to a preliminary committal hearing the presiding magistrate will set bond if the offenses is one of which there exists a right to bond.
Once the amount of bond has been fixed, it is possible to request, orally or by written motion, that the bond be reduced if the defendant cannot post a bond in the amount set.
D. Criteria for Granting of a Bond:
A person charged with an offense bailable only before a judge or the Superior Court may petition the Superior Court judge and request that he be released on bond. The Superior Court is obligated to set up a hearing regarding the issue of bond. The Superior Court is authorized to release the defendant if the jurors determines that the defendant:
1. Poses no significant risk of fleeing from the jurisdiction of the Court or failing to appear in Court when required.
2. Poses no significant threat or danger to any person, or the community, or any property in the community.
3. Poses no significant risk of committing any felony pending trial.
4. Poses no significant risk of intimidating witnesses or otherwise obstructing the administration of justice.
Where a defendant is entitled to a bond pending trial is only entitled, it is a matter of right to be released once on bond. Bond is forfeited, release on bond is at the discretion of the Court.
II Condemnations and Forfeitures
Georgia has numerous statutes which provide for confiscation or forfeiture. Several of these statutes are of particular significance in the criminal law fields since they relate to weapons, controlled substance, marijuana and the manufacture of transportation of illegal liquors.
Contraband per se is subject is to seizure or forfeiture. An article is deemed to be contraband if its possession is illegal.
Georgia law provides that any weapon, other than a motor vehicle, when used in the commission of attempted commission of a crime is subject to forfeiture.
When an article, controlled substance, conveyance or other item is seized under the Georgia law, the drug agent sheriff officer shall report the seizure to the District Attorney’s office within 10 days of the seizure. Within 30 days from the receipt of such notice, District Attorney or director acting on behalf of District Attorney shall file an action for condemnation of the Superior Court of the county where the property is detained or seized.
A person convicted of a crime may forfeit certain civil rights. The lost of these rights is usually referred to as “civil disabilities.” Among these are the right to vote, hold public office, engage in various kinds of employment requiring licensing.
II Pre-Indictment Proceedings
A. First Appearance:
Immediately after an arrest but later than 48 hours of the arrest without a warrant or 72 hours following an arrest with a warrant, unless the accused has made bond in the meantime, the arresting officer or the law officer having custody shall present the accused before a magistrate or other judicial officer for first appearance. At first appearance he shall be informed of the charges, his rights, etc.
Under Georgia statutory law, the Magistrate Court holding the commitment hearing decides whether there is sufficient reason to suspect the guilt of the accused and to bind him over for trial.
It has been held that the jurisdiction of the committee magistrate is to determine whether probable cause exists. Lastly, it should be noted that a defendant may waive his right to a preliminary hearing if he so desires.
IV Grand Jury
Grand juries developed under the English common law. However, the grand jury gradually developed an independence in its proceedings became veiled in secrecy. The grand jurists took an oath of secrecy, the judges ceased to examine their findings. Grand jury secrecy developed to protect jurors and accused persons from the tyranny of the king. The grand jury has been called an engine for discovery against organized and far-reaching crime. This attitude towards the grand jury is probably responsible for the legislatures authorization of special grand juries and investigative grand juries for certain counties.
V Indictments and Accusations
A. Background information:
In common law and formally in Georgia, the grand jury would return a special resentment from the which the prosecuting attorney would file an indictment. The distinction between indictments and special presentments have been abolished. Special presentments of the grand jury were turned into a coin and treated as indictments. Defendants may still be arraigned and tried in special presentments.
The term accusation is a generic term which includes an indictment, but the term indictment or special presentment does not include an accusation. In Georgia, the term accusation has a specialized meaning. It is said that an accusation is the equivalent of an information at common law.
VI Pretrial Pleas, Demands and Motions
After an indictment has been returned, defense counsel has the opportunity to utilize a great number of pleas, demurs, demands, notices and motions. Because of the time limitations and space limitations such items are loosely referred to as “pleadings.” The facts in each individual case will determine which of these pleadings are utilized and appropriate. Generally, some of these of these motions and pleadings are standard and will be used in every case. For example, you would always want to demand a list of witnesses and a copy of the indictment.
Presently, there are statutes in place which allow the defendant to opt into discovery and they would be entitled to see the information contained on the State’s files with certain limitations. Also, if a defendant opts into this procedure, he is required to divulge evidence and information he has in his case to the State.
B. Demand for a Copy of the Indictment or Accusation:
Georgia law provides that every person charged with a criminal offense shall be furnished with a copy of the indictment or accusation and the statute provides that it shall be furnished to the defendant prior to arraignment. Expert examination of critical evidence in criminal cases has been recognized in Georgia cases. In the past, most decisions have held that the granting of a motion to examine physical objects was a matter completely within the discretion of the trial judge. Also, under Georgia law, it provides a notice to produce, a party may compel production of books, writings and other documents or tangible things in the possession, custody, control of the opposite party.
Georgia law also provides the discovery of the defendant’s statement and scientific reports.
C. Double Jeopardy:
The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution states that no person shall “be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb” for the same offense. The Fifth Amendment applies to the states through the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The Georgia Constitution similarly provides that “no person shall be put in jeopardy of life or liberty more than once for the same offense except when a new trial has been granted after conviction or in case of mistrial.”
D. Demand for a Speed Trial:
When a defendant has been indicted for a non-capital offense, he may, as a matter of right, file a demand for trial at that term of Court or at the next following regular term. After the second term, by permission of the Court, he may file such a demand at any later term. And may not made until an indictment or accusation has been returned.
If a defendant has not been tried by the expiration of the second term, he may file a motion for his discharge. The motion must allege that the qualified jurors were unpaneled to try him at both terms.
There are numerous motions that a defense counsel may file which are only limited by his imagination.
F. The Special Plea of Mental Incompetency:
Historically two kinds of insanity have been recognized in Georgia: insanity at the time of the commission of the alleged crime and incompetency to stand trial. A defense based upon insanity at the time of the offense charged can be raised under a general plea of not guilty and no special written pleading need be filed. A plea of mental incompetency to stand trial, referred to as a special plea of insanity, as provided in the Georgia law. This plea relates to the competence at the time of trial.
Georgia law sets out the procedure to be filed by the Court when a defendant files a special plea of incompetency to stand trial. The trial over the plea of incompetency to stand trial civil in nature, with the burden of proof on the defendant or movement to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that he is not mentally competent to stand trial.
VII Plea Bargaining
Plea discussion is both an essential and desirable part of the criminal process. Plea bargaining or plea negotiating gives both prosecution and defense counsel an opportunity to talk about the case informally. Both parties may obtain informal discovery and gain other insights into the case.
Bear in mind that any plea agreement reached between the defense counsel and the district attorney must be approved by the judge. The judge can reject any plea agreement entered into between the parties.
Arraignment is the stage of the criminal proceedings where defendants are called upon to enter a plea. It consists of reading the indictment and asking him in open court whether he is guilty or not guilty. The defendant must be present at the time of arraignment. An arraignment seems to be regarded as a critical stage in a criminal proceeding.
The purpose of an arraignment is to put the defendant on notice of the charges against him and give him an opportunity to plea to the indictment. Arraignment serves to notify the person of the issues to be tried and the identity of the person who has been indicted. The time of arraignment also fixes the time for filing some motions and other pleas. Every defendant is entitled to be arraigned unless he waives his right.
B. Right to Counsel:
A defendant shall not called upon to plead until he has had an opportunity to retain counsel, or if he is eligible for appointment of counsel, until counsel has been appointed or waived.
C. Entering a Guilty Plea:
A Superior Court judge may accept a guilty plea and impose a sentence on a defendant. A guilty plea, like a confession, must be scanned with care and received with caution. A guilty plea is not valid unless the defendant understands the rights that he is waiving and the possible consequences of his plea. It is profitable to have a knowing and intelligent plea of guilty shown on the record to terminate the issue once and for all and to avoid subsequent attacks. If the plea is later attacked, the burden is on the state to affirmatively show that the guilty plea was intelligently and voluntarily given.
Every person accused of a crime has a right to a fair and impartial trial free from any demonstration or disorder which may prejudice or influence the jury. The United States Constitution provides that for a public trial of criminal cases under the Sixth Amendment, which is made applicable to the states through the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The Constitution provides that the press and the public have a federal constitutional right to be able to attend criminal trials unless the trial judge makes a finding which supports closure. There is a presumption in favor of open trial even in cases where the defense and the prosecution agree that a non-public trial may be conducted.
B. Defendant’s Presence at Trial:
The defendant has the right to appear at trial dressed in civilian clothing rather than prison clothes. Forcing a defendant to wear prison clothing is denying him his presumption of innocence and a violation of the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Generally, both at common law and under Georgia case law, a defendant has the right to appear in Court free from shackles, bonds, and handcuffs. This right is a intricate part of a fair and impartial trial. However, the sound discretion of the trial judge in an extreme situation the defendant may be required to wear shackles to prevent disruptive conduct or to ensure the safety of those in the courtroom. Not only does the defendant have a right to be dressed in civilian clothing and free from restraint, he may be present at all times during the course of the trial. If a defendant does not speak English he has a right to have an interpreter. The defendant is said to have the right to be present at every stage of the trial unless he has waived his right.
In the trial of a felony case, the judge has the responsibility and duty of having a court reporter present who shall take down all testimony. It has been held that all testimony and proceedings in a felony case must be reported except the argument of counsel.
A criminal defendant has a constitutional right to obtain the testimony of witnesses whom may be helpful to his defense.
C. Jury Trial Versus a Trial by the Judge:
The defendant has a right to have his case tried before a judge if he waives his right to a jury trial. However, a defendant has no federal constitutional right to a non-jury trial unless the trial judge and the prosecuting attorney agree to have the case tried without a jury. This is also the general rule in Georgia.
D. Placing the Case on Dead Docket:
One of the duties of the clerk of Superior Court is to maintain a dead docket. The Georgia code provides that the cases may be transferred to a dead docket at the discretion of the judge. The placing of a case on the dead docket postpones the prosecution indefinitely but does not constitute a dismissal nor termination of the case in the defendant’s favor.
E. Entering a Nolle Prosequi:
Prior to indictment, the district attorney in his sole discretion may dismiss a case. Even after indictment, with the consent of the Court, the district attorney may enter a nolle prosequi, before the jury is sworn and after an examination of a case in open court.
The United States Supreme Court has held that under the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution, is made applicable to the states through the Fourteenth Amendment, a defendant is entitled to a jury trial in any serious criminal case. Similarly, Georgia provides for a jury trial in all criminal cases. A method of making up the jury list has previously been discussed. In summary, a defendant has the right to select a jury from a list of jurors which represent the fair cross-section of the community.
XI The State’s Case:
A. Burden of Proof:
The burden of proof is on the state to prove that the defendant is guilty as charged. The burden is never on the defendant to establish his innocence or disprove of the facts necessary to establish the crime. The burden is on the state to prove every element of the crime charged and every material allegation of the accusation or indictment.
B. Reasonable Doubt:
The requirement that guilt of a criminal charge be established beyond a reasonable doubt dates back to the early years of our nation. The necessity of proof by the state beyond a reasonable doubt is a constitutional right guaranteed by the due process clause of the United States Constitution. Georgia law has also established the necessity of proof beyond a reasonable doubt before a defendant may be found guilty.
All elements of a crime as well as every material allegation, the indictment must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt in order to satisfy a conviction. A reasonable doubt may arise from the presence or lack of evidence as well as from any other factors. In the final analysis, the jury must determine whether a reasonable doubt exists, but guilt beyond a reasonable doubt must be determined solely on admissible evidence and admitted in the case.
C. Presumption of Innocence:
While the state has the burden of proof and must be prepared to overcome the defendant’s presumption of innocence by proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, the state may use certain presumptions and inferences.
D. Corpus Delicti:
In all cases there exists a presumption that the crime has not been committed. Thus, before the state may obtain a conviction, it must prove the corpus delicti beyond a reasonable doubt. Corpus delicti, meaning the “the body of the crime,” requires that all the essential elements of the crime charged must be proved. As part of the corpus delicti, however, it is not necessary to show that the defendant was the person who committed the crime. The corpus delicti must be established independently of a confession if a conviction is to be justified.
Generally, a person accused of a crime shall be tried in the county where the crime was alleged to have been committed, unless the trial judge determines that an impartial jury cannot be obtained in the county.
F. Requirements Regarding Proof:
In addition to establishing venue, the prosecuting attorney must prove all of the essential elements of the crime and the material allegations of the indictment. However, when indictment charges a crime was committed in more than one way, proof that it was committed in one way may set a primaface case.
Normally, the date set out in the indictment is not a material allegation. It is sufficient that the prosecuting attorney proves that the crime was committed within the period of the statute of limitations, prior to the return of the indictment. However, there are several recognized exceptions to this general rule.
G. Jackson-Denno Hearings:
The United States Supreme Court in Jackson v. Denno held that the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment requires the trial judge to determine that a confession was voluntary before the permitting the jury to hear it.
H. Finishing the State’s Case:
The state presents their witnesses and evidence first and after the state finishes then the defendant has an opportunity if he so desires to present any witnesses or evidence but is not required to do so.
XII Defendant’s Case:
A. Motion for a Directed Verdict of Acquittal:
At the conclusion of the state’s evidence, the defendant may move for a directed verdict of acquittal. If the motion is overruled, the defendant may then submit any evidence he wishes in his defense. If the motion is granted, it effectively terminates the case regardless of whether the jury agrees to the action.
XIII The Verdict:
The word verdict has been defined as the answer of the jury given to the Court concerning the matters of fact submitted to them.
The trial judge may not in open court either directly or indirectly express his approval or disapproval of the verdict. Once a judgement of not guilty has been entered, the trial court has no authority to vacate or set it aside.
After the jury or the judge has returned a verdict then comes the sentencing phase of the trial. The Court has several options regarding sentencing. Some crimes have minimum and mandatory sentences which the judge cannot deviate from. In most cases, the Court will pass sentence and determine from all the facts and the circumstances the appropriate sentence for the defendant.
XV Judicial Review
A. Right to Appeal:
The United States Supreme Court has never held that a defendant has a federal constitutional right to appeal in his conviction. For these reasons and because the right of appeal was unknown in common law, the right to appeal exists only where is provided for by statutory or state constitutional authority. In Georgia, the right of the defendant to appeal his conviction exists by virtue of the Appellate Practice Act.
A defendant may forfeit his right to appeal or waive his right to appeal based upon his own conduct or by the conduct of his attorney.
B. Right of the Defendant to be Released on Bond Pending His Appeal:
The defendant who appeals a misdemeanor conviction has the right to be released on a reasonable bond pending the appeal.
The procedure by which a defendant obtains a release pending his appeal requires that the trial court address four questions concerning whether to allow an appeal bond:
1. Is there a substantial risk the appellant will flee?
2. Is there a substantial risk the appellant will pose a danger to others or to the community?
3. Is there a substantial risk the appellant will intimidate witnesses or otherwise interfere with the administration of justice?
4. Does it appear the appeal is frivolous or was taken only for the purposes of delay?
C. Important Notice
If you have been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor, please contact our office immediately for a consultation regarding your right to appeal your conviction. It is important that you act quickly, because there are certain time restraints that must be complied with otherwise you can waive or forfeit your right to appeal. At The Law Offices of Joseph M. Todd, we aggressively fight to protect all of a person’s constitutional rights and to ensure that a defendant is provided due process of the law. Call our Jonesboro law offices at (770) 477-7878, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. For defendants that have been incarcerated, we will help arrange a bond by contacting a bonding company. We are a full service law firm with attorneys who are dedicated to preserving everyone’s constitutional rights.