What to Know Before Hiring a Criminal Defense Lawyer in Dayton, Ohio

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Did you know that Dayton, Ohio, is one of the most dangerous cities in the country?

In fact, crime data from the FBI places it below 96% of cities in the United States for safety.

The number of robberies increased to 287 per 100,000 residents over 2018 and property-related crimes in Dayton reached 4,513 per 100,000 the same year. Your likelihood of falling victim to violence in Dayton is 1 in 104. This is markedly higher than the 1 in 341 state average. Actually, more than 22% of Dayton, OH’s budget goes to the city’s police department.

It should come as no surprise that Dayton is home to many lawyers. There are around 37,873 licensed attorneys in Ohio alone. If you believe you have important information about criminal activity in Dayton, you can submit a crime tip to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office. Or, if by the contrary, you were charged with a crime, it’s vital that you look for legal help for your case. Who you partner with can mean the difference between prompt dismissal and unnecessary penalties.

The right criminal defense lawyer will help you understand:

  • Your available defenses
  • Your charges and their implications
  • Which plea bargains may be offered
  • What to expect moving forward

Of course, not all attorneys are the same. Here are some important things to keep in mind before you hire one.

Location and Experience

First, try narrowing down your search to lawyers who are familiar with the local courts where your case is pending.

According to Joe Suhre, a criminal defense attorney in Dayton, and founder of Suhre & Associates, LLC, while state laws aren’t always different, local practices can vary and it pays to partner with an attorney that knows the procedures, prosecutors and personnel related to your case. “It’s also wise to choose nearby lawyers so that you can visit their office and assess their expertise. Remember that your first consultation shouldn’t cost any money” Joe explains.

In addition, make sure that the attorney has represented defendants who were charged with similar offenses. Now more than ever, the complex nature of modern law necessitates specialization in particular fields. Your chances of success are highest when working with someone educated and experienced in handling your type of case.

Referrals and Recommendations

Advice from friends or acquaintances who were in similar positions to yourself can prove invaluable here. If you’re able to speak to anyone with first-hand experience hiring a criminal defense lawyer, take the opportunity to see whether it’s an ideal option. You can also use online resources such as directories, the state bar, and their websites.


Take note of how an attorney communicates whenever you contact or meet them. Do they respond quickly? Do they sound genuinely interested in your case? Ensure that they can answer your questions and address your concerns with clear explanations.

Fees and Pricing

The expenses associated with hiring a criminal defense attorney depend on several factors. This includes:

  • Experience
  • Location
  • History
  • Reputation

You’ll either be billed hourly or through a flat fee arrangement. Some lawyers offer payment plans to help cover ongoing charges, so don’t hesitate to ask for this if required. You should also check if pricing is transparent and there won’t be any additional or hidden fees later on.

Take some time to identify an attorney you can trust. This way, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that your case is being handled correctly.