Many people may assume that all hope is lost after they’ve been arrested for a crime—especially if they’re convinced of their guilt—but an arrest doesn’t equate to a conviction. There are several different ways to fight criminal charges; and, even if you can’t avoid the consequences entirely, an experienced criminal defense lawyer may be able to help you mitigate the immediate and long-term effects of your arrest. This is true regardless of whether you believe you’re innocent or guilty.
Even though you may believe that the state has enough evidence to prove your guilt, this is a conclusion that requires culpability beyond a reasonable doubt. A skilled attorney may also be able to negotiate a reduced sentence. Ultimately, even if you believe you’re guilty of a crime, you’ll likely benefit from an experienced criminal defense lawyer on your side.
Should You Admit Guilt to Your Criminal Lawyer?
When you find yourself on the wrong side of the law, you may wonder if you should admit guilt to your criminal defense attorney. After all, how can a lawyer work to clear your name if you’re actually guilty? Is it prudent to tell your lawyer the full truth?
Ultimately, defense attorneys are ethically bound to passionately represent all clients—the guilty as well as the innocent. Admitting guilt to your criminal defense lawyer doesn’t necessarily mean that a conviction is the only outcome. In other words, just because you committed a criminal act doesn’t mean there’s no wiggle room to alter or reduce the charge to a lesser crime.
The bottom line is that your lawyer will work with the facts of the case rather than your word in order to put forth the best defense possible. The question of guilt is left to the judge or jury at the end of the day. A good criminal defense lawyer doesn’t ask, “What did my client do?” but rather, “What can the government prove?” No matter what the defendant has done, they’re not legally guilty until a prosecutor offers enough evidence to persuade a judge or jury to convict.
How Can a Criminal Defense Lawyer Help Even If You’re Guilty of a Crime?
Before you lose all hope that you’re destined to serve a lengthy prison sentence or pay a devastating fine, consider the possible ways that a criminal defense lawyer can paint a picture of your innocence. If you’re facing criminal charges in Montgomery County, we’ve broken down a few techniques that an experienced criminal defense lawyer can utilize to help you mitigate or completely eliminate the charges against you:
Determining Whether You’re Actually Guilty
Before you start making assumptions about your case, you need to speak with a lawyer to find out if you’re actually guilty of the alleged crime. It’s not uncommon for individuals in this situation to not be guilty of the specific crime with which they’ve been charged. Likewise, the act committed may not amount to a criminal offense under Pennsylvania law.
For example, someone may be charged with a battery and believe they’re guilty because they did, in fact, hit another person. However, a lawyer who understands the law and who thoroughly investigates the case may realize that the suspect did so reasonably believing that it was necessary to protect a third person from harm. In this example, despite hitting another person, no crime was committed.
Seeking Entry into a Diversion Program and Negotiating a Plea Deal
A skilled attorney may be able to negotiate an agreement to save you from having to plead guilty if you’re willing to participate in community service, substance abuse education, or anger management classes. These are programs that, if completed successfully, “divert” defendants’ cases from trial and allow them to avoid having a criminal record.
If you’re not eligible for a diversion program, your attorney can seek to negotiate a plea deal on your behalf. Negotiating a plea deal can offer a number of benefits including avoiding the inherent uncertainty of going to trial.
Obtaining a Lighter Sentence
Knowing the full story can help your lawyer to negotiate a lighter sentence based on mitigation, even if they can’t eliminate charges completely. There are defense strategies that can be utilized to alleviate the consequences of your conviction—even if it’s a very serious crime—and you owe it to yourself to hire an attorney who can protect you to the fullest extent possible.
Contact an Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Montgomery County
Whether you believe you’re guilty or not, you’re entitled to a fair trial and an attorney who will represent your interests. If you’ve been arrested for a criminal offense, the Pennsylvania criminal defense attorneys at Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford, P.C., can help. Our firm will discuss with you the facts and circumstances surrounding your case. Together, we’ll put our best foot forward to reduce or completely vacate any penalties associated with your charge. Our highly trusted and well-versed legal team understands the ins and outs of Montgomery County criminal defense law and will be with you every step of the way.
For nearly 68 years, our attorneys have been serving the legal needs of clients in Montgomery County, Bucks County, Lehigh County, Chester County, Delaware County, and throughout the surrounding areas. We’ve earned the trust and respect of clients facing a wide range of legal problems. Our attorneys serve to protect you and guard your rights. Give us a call at (215) 822-7575 or complete our online contact form today.