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Answering Your Criminal Defense Questions

When you’re facing a criminal charge, everything in your life is brought into question – your reputation, relationships, freedom and future. If your mind is riddled with doubts and questions right now, it’s only natural. To provide people in Iowa dealing with criminal issues more clarity and certainty, the attorneys at Johnston, Stannard, Klesner, Burbidge & Fitzgerald, P.L.C. have compiled a list of our clients’ most common questions and answered them below.

When Are The Police Allowed To Search My Home Or Vehicle?

In the United States, the Consitution protects us from unreasonable searches and seizures of our personal property. To conduct a lawful search, the police must have a valid search warrant or probable cause to believe that a crime is underway, negating the need for a warrant. The police can also search you or your vehicle if you give them permission, but we’d never advise our clients to do that.

What’s The Difference Between Misdemeanor And Felony Charges?

Misdemeanors and felonies are two different classifications of criminal charges. Felonies are more severe and garner more severe penalties. An example of a felony offense is a violent crime like murder. Misdemeanors are less serious offenses than felonies and comparatively garner less severe penalties. An example of a misdemeanor is a drunk driving charge. Our attorneys can help people facing either felony or misdemeanor charges. We do not handle federal criminal offenses.

Will I Have To Go To Trial?

The answer depends on the circumstances and details of your case. Sometimes, accepting a plea agreement is preferable to going to trial. In others, the charges get dismissed, making a trial unnecessary. Working with an experienced criminal defense attorney can help you explore all the available options in your case and take the proper course of action.

What’s The Timeline Of A Criminal Case?

The timeline is different in every criminal case. However, trial information must be submitted no more than 45 days after your arrest. If this deadline passes with no action, your charges will be dismissed. Iowans have a right to a timely trial, and our attorneys will ensure this right is upheld and your criminal case is resolved within a reasonable time frame.

Talk To A Criminal Defense Attorney Today

If you have more questions about a specific criminal case, our attorneys are here to provide the answers you need. We offer free consultations – call 319-359-6492 or complete a contact form to schedule an appointment with us.

Notable Cases

Cedar County AGCR024516 — PLEA OFFER ACCEPTED — Attorney Shawn Fitzgerald’s client was accused of the crime of Operating a Motor Vehicle While License is Barred as a Habitual Offender §321.560/ §321.561/ §321.555 /§321.556 (An Aggravated Misdemeanor), as well as Failure to Use Child Restraint Devise §321.446 (A Scheduled Violation). Attorney Shawn Fitzgerald was able to secure a plea offer satisfactory to both client and state.

Notable Cases

Muscatine County AGCR057733 — PLEA ACCEPTED, CHARGE REDUCED — Attorney Shawn Fitzgerald’s client was accused of Domestic Abuse Assault §708.2A(2)(b) (A Serious Misdemeanor). An initial plea offer stated the client would have to plead guilty as charged, attorney Shawn Fitzgerald worked for a better offer for his client. The client was able to plead guilty to an amended lesser charge of Disorderly Conduct §723.4(2) (A Simple Misdemeanor).