If you find yourself in a scenario where you are looking at prison time or a hefty fine, the best way forward is to look into hiring a New Westminster criminal defence lawyer as soon as possible. You have the option to get representation from a private or court-appointed attorney, but only if your income qualifies for the former. How the legal system is designed is supposed to make competently representing yourself not an option. No matter how intelligent you might be, the system does not work that way and will not be in your favor. Whenever you find yourself in a criminal trial, the representation of a criminal lawyer in New Westminster, BC, is a necessity.
No criminal case is like the other. They all vary, and that is where criminal defence lawyers come in. They are trained to go through and identify parts of a specific case that make it unique. With the attorney’s knowledge, you will be in safe hands as they can find subtle evidence and reasons to help you win the case. Not sure what a criminal defence lawyer can do to help you? Check out some of the areas that might be helpful below:
Interviewing about the case
Once you have hired your attorney, the first thing they will do is interview you about the case. After meeting you in person, they will try to get as many details concerning the case as possible. They need to know as much as possible to give you the best representation. Expect your lawyer to ask you specific questions concerning the case, which helps understand your case’s possible defences. You will go through detailed questions but do not worry since this is all part of the process.
While your criminal defence lawyer might ask numerous questions, they still must investigate to see if there are any other avenues they can exploit to acquit you. It could include questioning the police how they approached your specific case or talking to witnesses who might have information related to the investigation. Every step taken is to try to develop the best defence possible.
Where an expert witness is used, the attorney is at liberty to interview them about the testimony they may provide and the evidence to be presented. Likewise, as part of the investigation, your criminal defence lawyer is allowed to go through the prosecution’s case before it reaches the jury. It serves as an opportunity to see any holes in the case that could refute the prosecutor’s case. Some of the things that your lawyer might be looking at include hiring an independent lab or expert to test the evidence.
Handling the witnesses
Attorneys have what it takes to comfortably gather evidence and statements from witnesses called by the prosecution. If you try to represent yourself, handling the witnesses can be a massive challenge. The reason is that many witnesses are never willing to give statements or information to people that were allegedly involved in a crime. Understandably, they fear for their safety but are always ready to talk to their attorney about what they saw or heard. Your lawyer has the proper training to help in working with the witnesses.
One of the responsibilities of a criminal defence lawyer is to work with you and the prosecutor to negotiate a plea bargain. Sometimes you might be guilty, and no amount of defence will set you free. Such times your criminal defence lawyer is supposed to look at the best solution available, which often calls for a plea bargain. It involves bargaining to reduce your potential sentence or take away some of the charges pressed against you. It would help if you understood that prosecutors do not like negotiation with defendants who represent themselves.
Impacting the sentencing
Sometimes you will be found guilty of the charges brought against you, and your criminal defence attorney will try as much as possible to develop the best sentencing program for your specific situation. There is a possibility that your lawyer could change the sentence you receive. In most cases, the changes are to help prevent you from twisting the criminal justice system.
For example, suppose you are handed a ten-month sentence in prison because of drug possession. In that case, your criminal defence lawyer can step in and suggest six months in prison and four months in a drug treatment rehabilitation center. It is an approach that minimizes the time you spend in prison but also helps you with the drug problem that led to your troubles in the first place.
Helping in the jury selection
A criminal defence lawyer is actively involved in the jury selection process. You may ask how that is possible, yet they represent the defendant. Your attorney can attempt to have jurors removed from your case if there is reason to believe they may be biased against you. Sometimes even when your lawyer has a bad feeling about a potential juror, it could be valid grounds to have them removed entirely from the case.
Helping with the trial process
Ultimately, your New Westminster criminal defence lawyer is supposed to make the entire trial process as comfortable as possible. The last thing any reasonable person would want is going into trial alone. Going into it alone is a sure way to get proven guilty of a crime you may not have committed. A criminal defence attorney will analyze and examine your specific case. They will look for the strengths and weaknesses concerning your case during the process and then advise you on what you need to prepare for trial.
Working with a professional allows you to get the guidance you need to present your evidence in court in a straightforward manner. Likewise, if you have a weak case, your attorney will let you know and explain the benefits of taking a plea deal. As part of the trial process, if something does not go the way you would have wanted, your criminal defence lawyer can help prepare an appeal.
If you have been involved in a crime that requires the help of a criminal defence attorney, look for someone who will represent you in the best way possible. Contact N.J. Preovolos Law Corporation to have an experienced defence attorney help you avoid a harsh sentence.