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Understanding Grand Jury Hearings

Many people have heard of grand jury hearings, but most are not sure what grand jury hearings actually entail. Understanding who is involved and what occurs in a grand jury hearing can help you if you are the subject of one or otherwise affected by one. If you think you are facing a grand jury, you want to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney.

In most courts, grand jury proceedings are held in confidence, but recent legislation approved this summer will allow grand juries to use audio electronic recording devices. The bill, awaiting signature by the governor, adds a level of accountability to the courts.

In Oregon, before someone can formally be charged with a felony, the case must be heard by a grand jury.

Anyone who is subject to a grand jury proceeding may not be entitled to any notice about the investigation or what the investigation entails. Usually neither defendants nor attorneys are allowed within the proceedings. The grand jury hears evidence and witnesses to decide if they should issue an indictment.

The grand jury allows a prosecutor to test out the evidence and see if what they have is strong enough to hold up in court. The prosecutor may still file criminal charges, even if the grand jury does not issue an indictment.

If you are facing any type of criminal charges, it is imperative to consult with an experienced Fairfax criminal defense attorney. Call today for your free, initial consultation.


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