An Overview of SC Criminal Law

The criminal justice system is complex and can be difficult for most people to navigate. Whether you are charged with a misdemeanor in the magistrate or municipal court, or a serious felony in General Sessions Court, it is essential that you have an experienced SC criminal law attorney to guide you through the process.

If you miss certain deadlines, or if requests are not made at the right time and at the right place, you could unwittingly be waiving important rights. If you miss a court date, you can be found guilty in your absence and a bench warrant may be issued for your arrest.

Don’t Plead Guilty

If you are found guilty in your absence or plead guilty to a magistrate or municipal court level misdemeanor, it may impact any General Sessions level charges that you have.

For example, although it may seem like no big deal to pay a fine on a minor traffic violation at your initial bond hearing, if that traffic violation led to an arrest for drugs in the car you may have just admitted to probable cause for the traffic stop.

Don’t plead guilty to anything or make any decisions about your case until you have spoken to your criminal defense lawyer.

Who Prosecutes Criminal Cases in SC?

Criminal cases are usually prosecuted by the government, unlike civil cases which are prosecuted by individual or corporate plaintiffs.

General Sessions level offenses are prosecuted by either the Circuit Solicitor’s office or the Attorney General, municipal offenses are usually prosecuted by a city attorney, and magistrate court offenses are prosecuted by either the Solicitor’s office or the arresting officer depending on what the charge is.

What Should I Expect After I’ve Been Charged With a Crime in SC?

The procedure will be different depending on what court you are in, what you are charged with, and what county you are in. You can find more information about each stage of the criminal process here on our website:

SC Criminal Defense Lawyer in Lexington, Columbia, and Myrtle Beach

If you have been charged with a crime or if you are under investigation, do not delay in contacting a criminal defense attorney. Our firm will move fast to ensure that your rights are protected throughout the process. 

Call the Thompson & Hiller Defense Firm now for a free initial consultation at our Myrtle Beach or Columbia office at (843) 444-6122 or contact us online today.

Client Reviews
Mindi and Laura were an amazing team team in helping my son with a traffic violation. There responsiveness from answering my phone call, to being able to pay the invoice online, showing up to court and representing my son for a ticket in less than 24 hours. Not to mention successfully having the ticket dismissed. The process was explained to us clearly each step of the way. This allowed us to prepare for any possible ramifications as well being patient with any questions we may have had. Even if the ticket did not get dismissed the care and attention they showed towards my son's situation made us feel very safe in their good hands for this legal matter. N. Jones
I retained Lacey Thompson & Hiller, defense firm for a difficult domestic violence case. She provided a strategy that won my case. Her legal skills are great, but just as important she's a supportive attorney who truly cares and her advice was spot on. I'll always be thankful. Besides Lacey, all the staff that I worked with at Thompson & Hiller firm were terrific: competent, professional, and personable. I recommend Lacey Thompson to everybody who needs a defense attorney. Anonymous
Attorney Laura Hiller, assisted me in 2013 by representing my daughter who at the time was only (14) years old in a juvenile criminal case being tried as an adult. The State charged her with murder. The claims at the time were completely shocking to myself and my daughter at the time and I wasn't sure what to do or who I needed to assist me with this. That's when I met Laura, who in all honesty kept me sane and hopeful through the entire process. She was so thorough when it came to gathering all information from all parties involved, aggressive when stepping into the courtroom, and behind the scenes. Most importantly though she was invested in proving my daughters innocence and I will forever be grateful for her and her work. My daughter's case was dismissed! Definitely who you want in your corner, whether the case is big or small. L.P.M.