Criminal offenses come with serious sentences based on the classification of the infractions. Most felonies are likely to present hefty penalties and fines if the person is convicted. A capital crime is one of the highest classifications for a felony, and a conviction leads to the death penalty. By reviewing the benefits of hiring a defense attorney, defendants see why the choice is so helpful.
Understanding How the Justice System Works
Criminal defense attorneys complete training that show them how the justice system works and what to expect when representing clients in a criminal court. After the attorneys have managed several cases, the individuals know what could happen in a variety of cases and what is needed to help their clients avoid a conviction. Defendants who want to learn about the benefits of hiring a defense lawyer get started by contacting an attorney and setting up a consultation.
They Can Identify a Defense That Applies
While not all criminal cases have a known defense, attorneys can identify a defense that applies when possible. Mistake of fact as defense questions the judgment of the officer that arrested the defendant, and in cases such as DUI, there is a possibility of the officer getting it wrong. In a DUI case, the driver must be driving the vehicle to be guilty, and the officer cannot arrest a person for driving under the influence if the person is parked in a parking lot with the car running.
The Attorneys Understand What Is Admissible
The admissibility of evidence comes into question when an item was presented to the court after officers break the chain of custody. For example, a murder weapon that was mismanaged by officers may be inadmissible if any party was in possession of the weapon wasn’t authorized to access the item. Any instance where the chain of custody is broken could lead to opportunities where anyone could tamper with the evidence, such as applying DNA evidence that wasn’t on the item originally.
They Have Investigative Skills
Criminal defense attorneys understand how to investigate criminal cases and identify evidence that could be useful in court proceedings. A great example is a receipt from a store that has surveillance. If the timestamp on the surveillance footage shows the defendant inside the store at the time of the crime, the evidence could prove that the person couldn’t have committed the crime since the person was somewhere else when the crime occurred.
Could Negotiate for Lower Penalties As Needed
If the evidence proves the defendant is guilty without a shadow of a doubt, there are possibilities for a plea deal. When defendants don’t have an existing criminal history, a lesser sentence is possible in some cases, and the attorney will understand the circumstances that must apply.
In some instances, the defendant may have knowledge of a separate crime that is useful in the investigation, and by acting as a witness, the defendant could get a lower sentence for their participation in the separate case.
Criminal defendants need an effective defense to avoid a conviction, or the person could face the full penalty associated with the crime. The prosecutor brings charges against the defendant after law enforcement officers have adequate evidence to take the defendant into custody. After an arrest, the individual needs a legal presentative to guide them through the process and build a credible defense.