About Attorney Gregory D. Brenner
Our firm founder Gregory D. Brenner is one of Los Angeles County’s best-known criminal defense attorneys. He has been featured on “Good Morning America,” the Court TV show “Catherine Crier Live,” “On Air With Ryan Seacrest” and “Celebrity Justice.” He has also appeared on “Fox News Live” and has been quoted in the New York Post. Before opening his own law firm he served as a public defender and has stood up for the rights of clients in courtrooms throughout Southern California for years. He is a compassionate, fair and honest advocate whose pugnacious spirit assists him in his fight to protect the rights of his clients. He understands both the importance and the need for justice.
Our practice is devoted exclusively to criminal defense. Our sincere yet aggressive style has earned a strong reputation in the legal community, and it is a reputation we takes seriously. Attorney Brenner has developed strong relationships with prosecutors and judges throughout Los Angeles county and his knowledge of the criminal justice system and how best to navigate through it puts our clients’ minds at ease. We understands that it is both what you know and who you know that matter when it comes to defending his clients. Mr. Brenner is admitted to practice law in state and federal courts in California, and is a member of the American Bar Association, the Los Angeles County Bar Association and the Beverly Hills Bar Association. From arrest to appeal, we handle the following issues in California Courts.
The Legal Process and Terminology
- Arrest: Police arrest based on probable cause that a crime was committed. They then turn over the evidence to the prosecutor who decides whether to file charges and if so, which one(s).
- Filing the complaint: The prosecutor files a “complaint” with the court. The complaint is a document which alleges charges against a person.
- Arraignment: At this stage, a person is advised of the charges and his/her constitutional rights. Bail is often set by the court to ensure that a person will appear for future court dates. The judge determines the bail amount using two factors: risk of flight and danger to the community. Bail amounts can range. In some cases, the court will not set bail. In other cases, the person is released on his/her own recognizance.
- Preliminary hearing: Preliminary hearings are only held in felony cases. At this hearing, the judge determines whether there is enough evidence to support the charges. If there is, the person is held to answer and sent to Superior Court for trial. The judge and prosecutor can add charges and/or adjust bail at this stage.
- Second arraignment: If the person has been held to answer, the prosecutor files a charging document called an “information” which alleges the charges. The person is again advised of these charges and informed of his/her constitutional rights.
- Pretrial conference: The defense attorney discusses the case with the prosecutor and sometimes the judge at the pre-trial conference. This allows the defense attorney to give mitigating information to the prosecutor. This is a good opportunity to obtain the best possible plea bargain.
- Trial: In almost all cases, a person is entitled to have a trial by jury. At the trial, the prosecutor and defense attorney have an opportunity to make an opening statement, introduce witnesses and evidence in favor of their case, cross-examine witnesses and offer closing arguments. During deliberations, the jury decides whether the prosecutor has met the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. If the jury finds a person not guilty, he/she is free to go and can not be subject to further prosecution based on the same offense(s).
- Sentencing: If found guilty, the judge imposes the appropriate punishment. Probation, with or without jail, may be imposed if state prison is not. Each specific crime carries a different possible penalty. At sentencing, the defense attorney argues for the lowest possible penalty permitted by law.
- Other consequences: In many cases, a conviction can result in losing the right to vote, losing the right to possess a firearm, losing the right to associate with other known criminals and/or having to register as a sexual or narcotics offender. Furthermore, a conviction can be used to increase the penalty if there are future convictions.
- Appeals: If convicted, a person may file an appeal. If the defense can prove that the trial court made legal errors or there was a denial of due process of law or a denial of a fair trial, the conviction could be overturned by an appellate court.
If you have been contacted by the police, arrested, or charged with a crime in Southern California please contact the Law Offices of Gregory D. Brenner today for a free initial consultation. For immediate assistance call us toll-free at 1-877-273-9050 or locally in Beverly Hills at 310-273-9050.