After being charged with a crime, it’s important to seek legal assistance before going to court so that all of the evidence can be reviewed and so that a proper defense strategy can be established. An attorney can help the defendant process the possible punishments that could be ordered by the court if the defendant is found guilty. There are a few defense strategies that are used in this situation that could possibly benefit the defendant and decrease the sentence that is given.
One of the ways that The Potts Law Firm can assist defendants is by looking at the identities of everyone involved in the alleged crime and determining if the defendant was actually there when the crime was committed. Sometimes, witnesses can incorrectly identify people who committed a crime or purposely give incorrect information as a way to get someone in trouble. The defendant could have a similar appearance as the person who committed the crime. An attorney can work to gather details about where the defendant was at the time the crime was committed in order to establish an alibi that will be presented to the court. Pictures and videos of the crime taking place can be used to help solve the correct identity of the person involved as well as DNA evidence if it’s available. Another issue that could arise with someone’s identity would be if the person who committed the crime wants to pin it on someone else because the person doesn’t want to take the blame.
2. Against One’s Will
If the crime was committed accidentally, then an attorney can gather evidence pertaining to the details of the crime and how there was no intent when it was committed. This is an important factor in a defense strategy as the defendant could have committed an act without knowing that it was illegal or without the intent to take any action to another level that would result in further charges. This defense could also be used if the defendant committed a crime while being held hostage or while being threatened by another person. If the defendant can give information about the person who threatened them or who forced the crime to be committed, then the attorney can usually approach the court and request that the charges be reduced or dismissed.
3. Reasonable Doubt
A way that The Potts Law Firm can help a defendant is by casting doubt for the court that the crime was committed by the person in question. As crimes become more serious in nature, the burden of proof will be a bit higher as well. Evidence should be overwhelmingly convincing so that there is no reasonable doubt that the person committed the crime. If there is any doubt involved, then it could play in the defendant’s favor and result in the charges being dismissed or reduced depending on the severity of the crime and any other evidence that has been obtained. The defense only needs to show that there could be evidence that someone else committed the crime. However, the prosecution needs to be able to demonstrate clearly that there is enough evidence to convict the defendant, which can be difficult to do if there is the slightest indication that someone else could have been involved.
Police officers aren’t always as upstanding as some people would like to believe. When an officer questions a defendant, mistakes can occur during the process, such as asking questions that aren’t legal or committing a search without the person’s consent or without a warrant. Sometimes, an officer could just want to try to charge a person who they believe committed a crime because of a certain profile. Officers could lie in court or even use unnecessary force while trying to get information from a defendant. If this happens, then the attorney can use the information as a way to reveal that the officer committed misconduct, which can usually result in the charges being dismissed.
5. Self Defense
A common defense strategy used by an attorney is that the crime was committed in self-defense. The defendant would have needed to feel threatened at the time the crime occurred for this defense to be used. Even if an intruder was entering the defendant’s home and force was used to cause harm to the other person, it would need to be shown that the defendant felt as though their life was in danger or that someone else’s life was in danger.
An attorney can discuss possible strategies with a defendant in order to determine the best way to approach the court. It’s important for the defendant to offer as much information as possible so that the attorney can piece together all of the details of the crime and what could have happened before a trial begins.
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