When Does It Make Sense To Go To Trial?
Criminal defendants choose to go to trial in less than 3% of cases, according to the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL). The remaining 97% are resolved through plea deals. That is a dramatic change from 30 years ago, when 20 percent of people facing state or federal charges chose trial.
Why do so few defendants go to trial? Primarily because prosecutors routinely offer drastically reduced sentences if a defendant accepts a plea deal, and they threaten exponentially higher sentences for those who are found guilty at trial. The NACDL reports that even defendants who are innocent will often accept a plea deal that comes with a lighter sentence rather than being found guilty in court and getting a much harsher sentence.
Work With A Lawyer Who Will Keep Your Options Open
If you face criminal charges, it is important to enlist the services of a lawyer who has trial experience and who will advocate for you in court. Too many criminal defense attorneys today have little or no trial experience.
Since beginning my law career in 2003, I have helped thousands of individuals address a range of criminal matters in court as well as through negotiations. I am thoroughly familiar with state and federal courts, judges and prosecutors in Memphis and surrounding Tennessee communities.
Every case has its own set of facts that must be carefully reviewed to determine whether going to trial makes sense. I will take the time to review your situation carefully and involve you in the decision-making process.
There are many factors that help determine whether to go to trial or negotiate a plea agreement, including:
- The evidence prosecutors have against you
- The penalty if you are convicted in court
- Availability of alternative sentencing that avoids jail
- Whether you have prior convictions
Get The Legal Solution That’s Best For You
I welcome the opportunity to review the facts of your case and recommend an effective course of action. The best legal strategy may be clear after our initial consultation, or it may require additional investigation and fact-finding.