Accusation or Indictment

Criminal Indictment

What is a Criminal Indictment

A criminal indictment originates from a grand jury proceeding that has considered information regarding an alleged crime and voted to have aprosecutor file formal charges, have the defendant arrested or summoned to appear in court for a preliminary hearing.

The Indictment Process

The appropriate prosecutor will review information and evidence provided by police, witnesses, and experts to decides whether or not to send the case to a grand jury.

For potential felony charges, a prosecutor will present the evidence to an impartial group of citizens called a grand jury. The job of the grand jury is to consider all evidence and testimony, then vote in secret on whether or not they believe that the accused should be formally charged with a crimes. A grand jury may vote that the evidence is insufficient to bring any criminal charges. In this case, no indictment occurs.

When a person is indicted, they are given formal notice that it is believed that they committed a crime. The indictment contains the basic information that informs the person of the charges against them.

When formal charges are brought forward, the accused can hire their own defense lawyer or (if they are found to be indigent) be assigned a public defender. From this point the case will follow the customary process for a criminal court proceeding.


If you have been arrested or charged with a crime you need to hire an expert defense lawyer. Call us at 770-956-1400 to arrange time to discuss your situation and get answers to your questions.