Is this your first time being arrested or investigated for a crime?
You may be scared of possibly spending time in jail, having a criminal record, how to protect yourself, and how to navigate the unknown territory of the court system. These are all common concerns. Very often, our clients have never had any trouble with the law and many of have never even received a traffic citation. For many people, there is also a lot of shame involved.
Getting arrested or investigated for a crime does not make you a bad person. Our clients are professionals, college students, mothers, grandfathers, and people from all walks of life that need legal help. They are good citizens who find themselves in a bad situation.
Will I go to Jail?
The biggest concern is often whether they will spend time in jail. The outcome of your case really depends on culpability. In other words, whether you are actually innocent or guilty of the crime you are being accused of. This will determine the strategy your lawyer will take to protect you and your liberty.
If you recognize that you did something wrong, made a mistake, wish it never happened, and want to make amends, your lawyer may take what is called a mitigating approach. This means your lawyer comes to the court and explains who you are as a person while highlighting the good traits about you so you’re not just another case number in a pile of files on a judge’s desk.
Our goal as your defense lawyer is to negotiate a good deal that doesn’t involve jail time, a criminal record, and won’t affect your personal and professional life goals. Do you want to continue being the breadwinner for your family? Avoid any red marks on a background check? Or keep your job and the details of your case hush? Maybe you acted in a heat of passion or another reason led you to commit an illegal act? Perhaps you didn’t know you were breaking the law? Or maybe you did know you were breaking the law, you have tremendous remorse, and if you could go back in time, you would make different choices?
If there are facts to support that you broke the law, your lawyer should highlight that you are coming to court with clean hands and this is your first time in trouble with the law. The court will have less worry of you being a repeat offender when they know it’s your first time getting arrested.
What if I’m innocent?
But what if you are innocent? In this scenario, your lawyer must explore every avenue of a defense in your case and leave no stone unturned to protect your reputation. In comparison to having facts to support some wrongdoing and a lawyer strategizing to negotiate a good deal with no jail time, being innocent means you might want to fight your case with a jury trial. This means no deals negotiated but rather fighting tooth and nail in front of 12 jurors to get you acquitted of the charges. If you want the court recognize that you are innocent or that you are actually the victim of the crime and not the aggressor, taking a deal (or what is called a plea bargain in court), is not be the best route for you.
If you are factually innocent, getting a copy of your police report is the first step. We want to see a full account of the police officer’s version of the story, their investigation, and what any witnesses have to say. If it is completely different from what really happened, we will hire a private investigator to create our own report to submit to the court. There are always two sides to every coin and it is our job as your lawyer to show the side that best represents you.
What are my next steps?
You can always call us anytime you need legal help. By the end of your call, you will know the best case scenario, worst case scenario, and likely scenario in your case. Some of our clients never actually meet us in person and prefer to communicate electronically via text or email. Our office is set up so everything is paperless so that you can navigate and defend your case from the comfort of your home, office, or anywhere you have access to the internet. Many people prefer a direct phone call and speaking to a live person.
We will guide you on what to expect, how to prepare for your case, and how long the process will take. Your focus can be on resuming normal life and getting back to work while we handle your legal issues. We get it done efficiently and discretely. We will take care of you from beginning to end.