Always work with a criminal defense attorney if you have been arrested and accused of violating the law. The judicial system is engineered to convict suspects and maximize penalties for most alleged crimes, so it’s important to have a Columbus criminal defense attorney on your side when going through the system.
A criminal suspect or defendant needs quality advice and representation in order to ensure they receive fair treatment from police, prosecutors, and judges. They also need assistance from a trained legal professional who can explain what is happening at each stage of the process from arrest through investigation, trial, and sentencing or acquittal.
Hiring a criminal defense attorney in Columbus or elsewhere delivers three major benefits, as described below. Defendants should also keep in mind that they have the right to hire their own lawyer even if they first requested representation from a public defender.
Your Defense Lawyer Will Protect Your Rights
Police must have a justifiable reason to arrest you, and they must follow strict rules when doing searches, gathering evidence, and conducting investigations. Likewise, a prosecutor must share evidence and deal fairly with you and your defense attorney. No one involved in the criminal justice system can mistreat a suspect or defendant because of that person’s race, ethnicity, or religion.
Your Columbus criminal defense attorney will make sure that police, prosecutors, and judges meet their legal duties to respect your rights and that they follow the rules that apply to your case. Any violations of your rights or of procedure can be cited as grounds for having the charges against you dismissed or used as grounds for appealing a conviction.
Your Criminal Defense Attorney Will Listen to Your Side of the Story
Criminal suspects and defendants often feel that the system is stacked against them. They get the sense that no one will even listen to their explanation for what happened, let alone believe them.
Hiring a Columbus criminal defense lawyer gains you an ally who is only interested in making sure your side of the story gets told and considered with equal seriousness. It is, however, important that you tell your attorney the truth and share all the details relevant to your case, so they can track down evidence, speak with witnesses, and arrange for people to testify on your behalf.
Your Defense Lawyer Will Fight for Your Best Outcome
You may not be able to have your case thrown out. The evidence against you may be enough to convict you. In such circumstances, your criminal defense attorney will do all that the law allows to get charges reduced and penalties minimized. Often, achieving those goals requires striking a plea deal with the prosecutor.
Since prosecutors know that many defendants are eager to plead out rather than risk a trial, they will sometimes offer an arrangement that does not actually benefit the defendant. Your defense attorney should know the law and be able to spot an unfair deal. They will then advise you not to accept the prosecutor’s offer and put pressure on the prosecutor to put together a better plea deal.