Clerk Magistrate Hearings
Received A Notice to Appear at a Scheduled Clerk Magistrate Hearing in MA? Don’t Risk It Going Alone. You Need a Top-Rated Attorney to Advise You.
Many people think that once you are accused of a crime, you are handcuffed and arraigned in court to answer to the charges. But when you are accused of some types of misdemeanors in Massachusetts — like negligent operation of a vehicle — and you are not arrested, you may be entitled to a clerk magistrate or “show cause” hearing. The purpose of this hearing is to determine whether there is probable cause to file a formal charge or criminal complaint in the District Court.
If a clerk determines that there is probable cause, a criminal complaint will issue, and the case will be referred to the District Attorney’s Office for prosecution. Unfortunately, once a criminal case is opened and you are arraigned, the criminal charges will be on your record, even if the charges are dismissed later. Potential employers and your current job — or any other person or entity that runs a background check — can see the record of the charge because it is public. But you can avoid the charge appearing on your criminal history. Our top-rated Worcester criminal defense attorney Darren T. Griffis is ready to investigate and clear your name.
1 Mercantile Street.
Suite 740 Worcester MA, 01608
Worcester criminal defense attorney Darren T. Griffis is a persuasive and aggressive lawyer who zealously defends clients in clerk-magistrate hearings throughout Worcester County and all over Massachusetts to help persuade a clerk not to issue a criminal complaint. When he takes your case, he will work tirelessly to get the best possible outcome for your hearing.
What are the Common Misdemeanor Charges Heard by the Clerk-Magistrate?
Many types of misdemeanor charges that do not result in an arrest can lead to a summons for a clerk magistrate hearing. The common types of charges that can trigger a clerk magistrate hearing include:
- Shoplifting and larceny
- Assault and battery
- Leaving the scene of property damage
- Negligent operation of a motor vehicle
- Drug possession
- DUI/OUI (Operating While Under the Influence) where no arrest is made
We know the most effective strategies for approaching a variety of charges in clerk magistrate hearings — from using photographs, documents, and other forms of evidence, to effectively presenting mitigating information that a clerk can consider in his or her probable cause determination. Whatever the circumstances, we are ready to defend you with everything we’ve got. Talk to us!
Robust Defense: How Do I Win in a Clerk Magistrate Hearing?
A clerk magistrate hearing is a serious matter that you shouldn’t treat like a minor misunderstanding. It is your best and last chance to avoid being formally charged. That’s why you need an experienced Worcester clerk magistrate hearing attorney with a proven track record to advise you and speak on your behalf. While every case is different, our lawyer will either
- Challenge probable cause; or
- Prevent the issuance of the complaint based on conditions or facts that the police may not have known.
Attorney Griffis knows how to persuasively argue why the court should not issue a criminal complaint. We have the experience and skill to secure a positive outcome. Don’t hold off calling. Get in touch immediately to schedule a meeting.
High-Value Defense to Prevent Arraignment, Do I Need a Lawyer in a Massachusetts Clerk Magistrate Hearing?
It can be easy to disregard or ignore a clerk magistrate hearing notice when it arrives in the mail. Because of this informal nature of the notice, you may think it isn’t such a big deal, that it’s just a routine matter that requires your presence. That is untrue.
The truth is that these hearings often pose significant legal risks to the accused. Most probable cause hearing eventually result in criminal complaints and arraignment on charges because of the extremely low standard of evidence needed to show probable cause. That’s why you need an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side. Attorney Darren T. Griffis can increase the odds of your success at a clerk magistrate hearing.