Criminal Law

  • High Profile Crimes
  • DUI – Driving Under Influence
  • Assault and Battery
  • Drug Charges
  • All Criminal Matters
  • Felonies & Misdemeanors

Attorney Jessie Glenn and the Glenn Law Firm handles all criminal matters.  If wrongfully accused call Attorney Jessie Glenn now! Attorney Jessie Glenn and the Glenn Law Firm have been right here in the Charleston, South Carolina area since 2003!

Frequently Asked Questions

First, exercise your right to remain silent and request to speak to your attorney. Second, consult an attorney even if you are not certain that you want to hire one. Consultations are not expensive and most attorneys will sit down with you and look up the statute/ordinance that you are accused of violating, explain to you the possible outcomes, and how you should approach the situation. I am certain everyone can agree that it is best to have as much of the information as possible prior to making any decision. What if you were charged with the wrong statute? What if there is a lesser included charge that you can plead to that does not carry the same amount of punishment (i.e. fine or jail time)? Always, get as many answers as possible. Also, you can consult more than one attorney. See what they both inform you about the law and choose the attorney you believe will best represent you and your interests.
If you are charged with a crime and you do not want to accept the offer that the state has made to you, you can request a bench trial (where a judge can decide your innocence or guilt) or jury trial (where regular men and women will decide your guilt or innocence).

If you are charged with a misdemeanor there will generally be 6 juror members. If you are charged with a felony there will generally be 12 juror members. These will be the people who will decide your guilt or innocence. It seems scary to have 6 or 12 total strangers who almost never have any experience with law to decide a person’s fate. However, it is sometimes best to not have judges or those involved in the penal system to decide your innocent or guilt. To have ordinary people reviewing evidence to determine the guilt of a person; not a judge or a police or government agency, but members of a person’s peers that do not hold any bias or have any predisposed thoughts.

An accused can always plead nolo contendere (no contest). However, this will have the same effect as pleading guilty as it will basically be admitting all of the allegations made by the state. You can be punished the same and you will still have a police/crime record.
Sometimes. Depending on when you were convicted, plead guilty, or plead nolo contendere the jury sometimes can hear about the past convictions.
No. One of the rights that every citizen has in America is the right not to incriminate themselves. Each situation is fact specific and will almost always require the advice of competent counsel.

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Pardons

What is a Pardon?

A Pardon basically relieves all of the legal consequences of a crime and conviction. However, it does not remove the conviction from your criminal history nor does it relieve a person from registering as a sex offender if they were required to do so.  A person’s arrest record will reflect that they were granted a pardon for the crime. A Pardon restores all civil rights lost as a result of a criminal conviction.  This includes the right to vote, hold office, possess a fire arm, or be licensed in any occupation pursuant to South Carolina Code Ann. 24-21-990.

Now, there is not a right to know the reason why or why not you were or were not granted a Pardon.

Pursuant to 24-21-960 the application fee is $100.00.

Who is eligible for a Pardon?

South Carolina Code Ann. § 24-21-950 sets forth the guidelines for determining eligibility for pardon:

(A) The following guidelines must be utilized by the board when determining when an individual is eligible for pardon consideration.

(1) Probationers must be considered upon the request of the individual any time after discharge from supervision.

(2) Persons discharged from a sentence without benefit of parole must be considered upon the request of the individual any time after the date of discharge.

(3) Parolees must be considered for a pardon upon the request of the individual any time after the successful completion of five years under supervision. Parolees successfully completing the maximum parole period, if less than five years, must be considered for pardon upon the request of the individual any time after the date of discharge.

(4) An inmate must be considered for pardon before parole eligibility date only when he can produce evidence comprising the most extraordinary circumstances.

(5) The victim of a crime or a member of a convicted person’s family living within this State may petition for a pardon for a person who has completed supervision or has been discharged from a sentence.

(B) Persons discharged from a sentence without benefit of supervision must be considered upon the request of the individual any time after the date of discharge.

South Carolina Code Ann. §24-21-970 provides for the application by an applicant where they have a terminal illness where there life expectancy is one year or less.

Who makes the final decision?

The Review Board will review the application.  The Applicant must receive notice of the hearing. However, the Board may reach their decision even if the Applicant does not appear.

Pursuant to South Carolina Ann. §24-21-930 two thirds of the members of the board must agree to the Pardon.

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Preliminary Hearings


Should I Request a Preliminary Hearing?

Yes. Often times a Defendant is uncertain if they should request a preliminary hearing.  Most attorney’s would agree that a client should request a preliminary hearing.  This is an opportunity for the state to prove that they have enough evidence to proceed. The State must present a “reasonable suspicion” that a crime was committed and that the defendant committed it. And, it is a time for your attorney to meet with and briefly examine the officer and gauge how credible they will be as a witness and to obtain viable and important information about the pending criminal charges.  It is also a good time to point out any weaknesses that the state might have in their case. Rarely, are cases won during a preliminary hearing, but it is an opportunity to get a recorded statement from someone who investigated the matter. Now, the testimony itself is generally not admissible at a later trial unless it is to impeach (show a prior inconsistent account) a witness a trial.

When Do I Have To Request The Preliminary Hearing?

By statute a Defendant has ten days to request a Preliminary Hearing in writing.  Keep in mind some courts, very few however, might allow a little more time.

How Do I Request a Preliminary Hearing?

Request the Preliminary Hearing in writing. Do it immediately.

What Happens If I Prevail At The Preliminary Hearing?

If you prevail at the Preliminary Hearing that means that the state has failed to prove that there is probable cause that you committed the criminal act and you should be released from custody if you were in custody (unless there are other crimes that you are being detained on).

To Learn more about Preliminary Hearings click on the link below:

Information About Preliminary Hearings

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