Criminal Defense Lawyer in Bolivar, TN
Criminal law is a system of legal rules. The goal of this system is to keep people safe while deterring criminal behavior. People who are caught violating these laws are subject to possible incarceration, fines, as well as many other penalties. The criminal justice system in the United States in very deep, complex, and adverse. Other than minor infractions such as traffic violations, people will need the advice and assistance of a qualified attorney. There are penal codes that different legislators from local, state, and federal levels use for specific crimes and for their consequences. Crimes that are less serious are classified as misdemeanors usually carry a maximum sentence of one year in a county jail.
Felonies are crimes of a much more serious nature. Punishments that are associated with felonies usually carry a sentence of more than one year in state or federal prison. White collar crimes can also be classified as felonies such as money laundering and embezzlement. Very often the question arises on how to interpret the law. Judges and lawyers usually turn to a principle known as stare decisis. Stare decisis are court opinions that have been given prior that deal with similar issues. They use these older cases, decisions, and opinions to form what is known as a precedent. This precedent means that the court gives a decision on a specific set of circumstances and the ruling is then a binding precedent for future and similar cases that come to the court. It is Law Enforcement's responsibility to investigate alleged crimes. There are rules in place so that police officers respect citizens and their constitutional rights. Many times when a defense attorney challenges the prosecution it is based on a procedural violation committed by the police.
When it comes to criminal prosecution there are traps set up at every step of the way for those who are unfamiliar with the workings of the court system. One of the jobs of an attorney is the ensure their clients from doing or saying anything that will help the prosecutiuon gain a conviction. The accused also has the right to waive their right to an attorney. This many times can harm their case, but by law it is within their rights to represent themselves. When someone has been arrested they are questioned about the crime. They are informed of their Miranda Rights and then cops try and proceed to get a confession. If a lawyer is not present the accused could make incriminating statements that can be used against them later in a court of law. Whether it is a misdemeanor or a felony arraignment is always held in an open court. The judge details the nature of the charges and then requests for the defendant to make a plea. Many times if people do not have an attorney they may just plea guilty right here. By doing this people are giving up some very important rights like being able to negotiate a lighter sentence. Another very important stage is the discovery. This is where the prosecution turns over copies of all the evidence that has been gathered against the defendant. This evidence can include things such as police reports, lab results, video and voice recordings, as well as other things that can determine whether the case goes to trial or not. In order to properly prepare for trial the defendant needs these discovery materials. The case will continue on to trial if the state does not offer a plea that the defendant is willing to accept.
Trial is the place where witnesses are questioned and arguments are presented to the judge or jury. Not just anyone is capable of conducting a trial. One needs legal training in order to be successful. This would include how to cross exam a witness and how to comply with rules of evidence. The outcome of court is what decides whether the defendant is free to walk or gets a jail term.