When Facing Criminal Charges, Selecting an Experienced Lawyer is Vital
Several recent United States Supreme Court decisions have increased the complexity of analyzing sentencing ranges in criminal cases, in both the state and federal courts. Many types of cases share state and federal jurisdiction, including firearms violations, bank fraud, child pornography, and various drug offenses. The sentencing schemes in the state and federal courts are very different, though both must be compliant with federal constitutional safeguards.
When someone is charged with a crime, he has various options to consider when creating an action plan. To make informed decisions, the client must become educated on the nature of the charges, the anticipated trial evidence, and the various trial rights to which an accused is entitled in our justice system. Some of the options available to the accused include proceeding to trial in defense of the charges, pursuing dispositive motions to dismiss the case, pursuing plea negotiations, and related matters.
In order to make informed decisions, the client must also understand the maximum punishment and the likely punishment ranges and options in any given case, in the event of a conviction by plea or trial. All of these variables must be clearly explained in order to enable the client to make an informed and intelligent decision.
Creating a strong action plan is important because the vast majority of cases in criminal courts are resolved short of trial, usually by a plea pursuant to an agreement reached between the parties. Therefore, in most cases, it is critical that the client understands all of the options, including the right to trial, the right to confront witnesses to be presented by the government, the right to force the government to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt, the right to remain silent, the right to testify if the client chooses to testify, and various other rights. There are potential benefits to proceeding to trial in defense of the charges, while there are potential costs as well. Each case must be evaluated on its own merit and unique facts and analyzed both factually and legally in order to permit a client to choose an action plan intelligently among options presented.
The McCroskey Law Firm has substantial experience in trial and litigation of criminal and civil cases in state and federal courts. If you have any questions or concerns regarding criminal law matters, please contact McCroskey Law, PLC.