If you've been arrested for a crime you didn't commit, you need to defend your legal rights. You have the right to an attorney who can help you present your case. After being wrongly accused of something myself, I learned quickly how to navigate the legal avenues to have my case dismissed. My attorney was a great resource for building the case, and because of my understanding of the law, it worked. I created this site to share what I learned along the way and some other great tips for others who have been wrongly accused and arrested for a crime.
When someone meets with a criminal defense lawyer, it's not uncommon for them to focus on winning their case. It's important to understand, however, what winning means in this particular context.
For a defense attorney, winning means protecting their clients' rights and interests. The range of potential outcomes is wide, and it only narrows down once it becomes clear how the prosecution is going to proceed. Let's take a look at the ways a criminal defense attorney may go about trying to win a case.
Outright Win Scenarios
These are the scenarios where the client never serves any jail time, pays any fines, or is sentenced for any offense. One of two possibilities usually plays out if a defense attorney achieves a clear win.
Firstly, you might be able to get the charges dropped. The prosecution might realize how weak their case is and abandon it. Also, a criminal defense lawyer is likely to file a motion to dismiss. This is a legal procedure where a party asks the judge to toss the case because it is fundamentally flawed. For example, the police might have failed to maintain the chain of custody for samples and test results in a drug case.
Secondly, a defendant can win by getting any verdict other than guilty. The best scenario is one where an acquittal on all of the charges occurs. However, even the failure of a jury to reach a verdict can be a desirable outcome.
Pretty Good Wins
Another approach is to attack the evidence. Such attacks can poke holes in cases. Also, keeping certain types of evidence from being admitted into a trial might be seen as a winning move.
For a defense attorney, protecting a client's rights and their interests isn't always a perfect alignment of purposes. If the DA offers you a significantly reduced charge in exchange for a guilty plea, is that a win? For someone who felt confident they were going to be convicted of an offense, it might be. A lot of cases end with plea bargaining, and a good plea deal could significantly reduce or even eliminate the amount of time spent in jail.
Just reducing a charge from a felony to a misdemeanor could make a world of difference in terms of time served. Likewise, some felonies come with registration and local notification requirements, such as sexual assault cases. Not having a client have to live under this cloud can be a win, too.
To learn more, contact a criminal defense attorney.Share
12 June 2020