If you are charged with a crime, you have a right to defend yourself against those charges. A criminal defense attorney can help you navigate the criminal justice system, prepare your legal defense, and ensure your rights are protected, and try to negotiate deals with the prosecutors. These deals might include reduced bail, reduced charges, and reduced sentences. Within the very complex criminal justice system, a defense attorney serves as the defendant’s guide, protector, and confidant! (At least this is how it is supposed to be.)
When do I need a Criminal Defense Attorney?
Being charged with a crime — whether major or minor — is a serious matter. A person facing criminal charges risks severe penalties and consequences, such as jail time, having a criminal record, and loss of relationships and future job prospects, among other things.
The following is just some of the possible criminal matters where you might need qualified and experienced representation:
- Drug Charges
- Domestic Violence
- White collar crimes
- Juvenile crimes
What does a Criminal Defense Attorney Do?
Criminal defense attorneys examine witnesses, help formulate a plea, analyze the prosecutor’s case, assess the potential sentences, review search and seizure procedures, question witnesses, and gathers evidence.
Defense counsel also provide more personal services by giving the defendant a reality check as to the possible outcomes and by helping the defendant to deal with the frustrations and fears resulting from being thrown into the criminal justice system. In the chance that a plea deal cannot be made, the defense lawyer represents the defendant at trial.
Finding an Attorney
When looking for a private defense attorney, look for an attorney who specializes in criminal defense and practices in the jurisdiction (city or county) where charges are pending. A local attorney will be familiar with the judges and prosecutors in the area to give you the best results. If you’re local to Southern Missouri, give Tad Morlan a call!