Meriden Arrest Process

When someone is arrested for a crime in Meriden, Connecticut, there is a certain arrest process that they should expect. It is good to be prepared for this process, and to have guidance through it which is why it is always advisable to consult with a Meriden criminal lawyer as soon as possible following an arrest.

There are two types of arrest in Connecticut. The first is an arrest by warrant. The second is what is called an on-site arrest. There are two different situations and the process for each is different.

Warrant Arrest

In terms of a warrant arrest, the way that works typically involves a police investigation. There is a complaint made, whether it be a larceny, an assault, or some sort of sale of narcotics.

The police have undertaken an investigation, and they have written a warrant trying to establish probable cause. That warrant is then given to the State’s Attorney to review to determine if there is probable cause.

If a State’s Attorney reviews it and believes there is probable cause, they sign off on the warrant and at that point, it is then given to the judge and again reviewed for finding of probable cause. The judge will review it. If they find probable cause, they sign the warrant and then there is an active arrest warrant.

On-Site Arrest

The other option is what is called an on-site arrest. An on-site arrest typically involves a situation in a DUI or a fight in progress or something along those lines, where there is an active ongoing crime and someone makes a complaint or calls the police and the police arrive at the scene of the actual ongoing criminal activity.

A good example is when there is a bar fight, a bartender calls the police, and the police arrive and see two individuals fighting one another, and they make an on-site arrest of both individuals. They are able to simply write a report and get probable cause of that individual’s arraignment.

The Arraignment

The first step in the arrest process is being arrested and that is done through either a warrant arrest or an on-site arrest. Once an individual is charged with a crime, the first court date is called the arraignment.

There are two purposes of the arraignment. In the case of an on-site arrest, the judge will review the police report and find probable cause or make a finding of probable cause. The second purpose—and this applies to both an on-site and an arrest by warrant—is for the court to review the bond.

Setting Bond

A bond is an amount that is set that the court will review based on the number of statutory factors. The purpose of bond is to ensure that the person comes back to court. At the initial court date, the arraignment, the judge will review the allegations and the individual’s arguments as to their ties in the community, their criminal history, and the basic allegations of the case. Then they will set a bond. Again, the purpose of bond is to ensure the person comes back to court.


Typically people will—in order to be released if they are held on bond—work with a bondsman when they have to post the full amount of the bond with the court.

The way it works with the bondsman is the bondsman charges a percentage of the total bond, they charge that amount and that is their fee for covering the bond. That money is not returned at the end of the case.

The individual pays a bondsman, they cover the whole bond, and they are released from custody. However, the fees paid to bondsman are not later returned.

On the other hand, while it is not as frequent, some people will post the full bond with the court, and at the end of that case, assuming the person returns to court, they will have that posted bond returned to them.

Initial Court Process

After the arraignment, the case will be continued and the actual court process will begin.

The first step of any case is to obtain the necessary discovery—the police reports, videos, photographs, and any medical records—and that is the first step that the defense begin with in any case.

Contacting a Meriden Lawyer

The best way to get in contact with a lawyer is to simply ask to speak with a lawyer. The police department will do the initial booking process, which involves the individual being fingerprinted, having their picture taken in some cases, and being asked general biographical identifying information.

Once that happens, the individual has a right to contact an attorney and the police will typically provide them time to make a phone call to an attorney.

In the event that that does not happen, an individual can invoke their right to remain silent and request to speak with an attorney. They will be provided an attorney at their arraignment. At the very latest, they will have the opportunity to speak with an attorney prior to appearing in court.