Have you been charged with a crime? Are you under investigation? If you answered “Yes” to either question, you should call the criminal defense attorneys at Goldfinch Winslow. Our law firm supports those who need practical legal advice in the community. Protecting your rights throughout the legal process is our main goal.
Our nation’s complex criminal justice system can be daunting and overwhelming for the average citizen to navigate. A knowledgeable and competent criminal defense lawyer can help you through each step of the process. Our state and federal courts each have their own methods and procedures to follow depending on the type of case presented. In fact, courts in South Carolina are often different than what citizens from outside of the state may be accustomed to.
Have you recently been arrested for driving under the influence (dui), possession of a controlled substance, shoplifting, or another serious criminal offense? Let our team of experienced criminal defense attorneys help you with your criminal defense case.
The attorneys at Goldfinch Winslow understand how to navigate the South Carolina criminal court system. In South Carolina, the prosecutor typically decides when, where, and who to prosecute in a case and also chooses the judge that will hear the plea or trial.
Magistrate courts are consolidated to handle certain types of cases in each county, generally for offenses that do not carry a maximum punishment of more than thirty (30) days in jail. These courts include the Preliminary Hearing Court, Central Traffic Court, Criminal Domestic Violence Court, Centralized Magistrate Bond Court, and Central Jury Courts. Most of the counties in South Carolina have similar court systems in place.
In addition to magistrate courts, over 200 municipal courts exist in the state of South Carolina. Georgetown County has four distinct areas of the Atlantic coastline — also called Waccamaw Neck — and includes: Murrells Inlet, Litchfield, Pawleys Island, DeBordieu, and the city of Georgetown. Horry County has municipal courts located in Atlantic Beach, Myrtle Beach, Surfside Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Aynor, Conway, Loris, and Briarcliffe Acres.
The South Carolina Solicitor’s Office is the prosecuting agency for all criminal matters in Circuit Court, Family Court, and, sometimes Magistrate’s Court. The Circuit courts are divided into the Court of Common Pleas — for cases pertaining to civil matters; and the Court of General Sessions — for matters considered criminal in nature. The principal parties in these cases are the Solicitor representing the State and the defendant’s attorney. Depending on the nature of the offense, this judicial process generally requires the participation of law enforcement officers and may require the magistrate, a grand jury, the Department of Corrections, pretrial intervention program staff, and parole, probation and community corrections staff.
Failure to meet deadlines and the failure to submit requests at the correct place and time could cause a defendant’s rights to be waived — or, given up. Hiring an experienced defense lawyer from Goldfinch Winslow, LLC means that your case will be carefully monitored and important requirements and milestones met on time and in a competent and professional manner.
Criminal cases are prosecuted by the government, and General Sessions level offenses are prosecuted by the Circuit Solicitor’s office or the Attorney General. Municipal offenses are typically prosecuted by a city attorney, and magistrate court offenses are prosecuted by either the Solicitor’s office or the arresting officer – depending on the type of charges.
It is important to hire a skilled criminal defense attorney to guide you through the court processes and stand by your side throughout the case.
Goldfinch Winslow’s criminal defense team assists in all manner of proceedings in criminal courts such as:
- Bail/Bond Hearings
- Magistrate & Municipal Court Offenses
- General Sessions Offenses
- Misdemeanors & Felonies
- Non-Violent, Violent, Serious, & Most Serious Offenses
- Preliminary Hearings
- Pre-trial Motions
- Jury Trials
- Diversion Programs (e.g. Pre-Trial Intervention, Drug Court, Alcohol Diversion Programs)
- Administrative Hearings
- Probation Violations
- Juvenile Criminal Defense
If you have been charged with a criminal misdemeanor or felony, you need an aggressive criminal defense attorney to investigate your case and defend you. Our legal defense team will review the State’s evidence, review all related records, retain the best experts, and utilize skilled investigators to create the strongest defense possible. Contact Goldfinch Winslow today to discuss your case.