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What Does a Criminal Defense Attorney Do?

The role of a defense attorney is to advocate for the interests of their client when they are in legal trouble, such as after an arrest. Their goal is to reduce or avoid the negative consequences that an arrest or criminal charge can bring.

A criminal defense attorney is always on their client’s side, and they have an ethical responsibility to protect the rights of those they represent. So what does a criminal defense attorney in Daytona Beach do? Read on to find out.

After Your Arrest

When you are arrested for a crime, the police will gather evidence against you. Your defense attorney will guide you through this process and ensure your rights are protected along the way.

As part of their investigation, police may do some or all of the following:

  • Attempt to interview you about the incident that led to your arrest
  • Collect witness statements about what happened
  • Look for videos or other evidence related to the incident
  • Search your home, car, or electronic devices like cell phones for evidence related to the incident

You have a right to have your defense attorney present with you when police speak with you. Your lawyer will advise you on how to respond to police questions and other attempts to gather evidence.

If You Are Charged with a Crime

When the police have gathered evidence, they will hand it over to a district attorney, sometimes known as a prosecutor. The prosecutor will examine the evidence gathered by police and determine which criminal laws may have been violated. The prosecutor may then choose to charge you with a crime.

If you are charged with a crime, capable Daytona Beach criminal lawyers will do the following to prepare for your case:

  • Ask you a lot of questions about the incident in question
  • Take time to listen to your side of the story
  • Communicate with you in a clear, easy to understand way
  • Help you to understand your rights, the charges against you, and the potential consequences you face

Once your defense attorney has a thorough understanding of the facts of your case, they will advise you on the best way to proceed.

Next Steps

In the movies and on TV, every criminal case ends in a dramatic trial. In reality, very few cases ever reach that point. Competent criminal defense attorneys in Daytona Beach will try to resolve your case long before it ever gets to a trial.

In some cases, your defense attorney may be able to convince the prosecutor to dismiss the charges against you entirely. You may have been arrested by mistake, or there may be very little evidence against you.

In other cases, if necessary, your criminal defense attorney will try to convince the prosecutor to reduce the seriousness of the charges against you. This process is called “plea bargaining.” In that scenario, you may formally admit to some wrongdoing in return for a lesser punishment than you otherwise might receive.

If your case does go to a trial, your defense attorney will work to point out weaknesses in the evidence gathered by the police and prosecutor. They will do everything in their power to ensure that you are found “not guilty” of the charges against you.

Why Criminal Defense Attorneys Are Important

While most police and prosecutors are honest and good at their jobs, they can make mistakes. A criminal defense attorney provides an important balance to the enormous power of the government. They work for you and you alone to protect your rights.

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