A Guide to Criminal Defense.
In criminal defense a client can be charged with numerous things ranging from a simple misdemeanor all the way up to a felony. A conviction in a criminal defense trial could lead to fines, prison time, community service, and up to the death penalty. The main job of a criminal defense lawyer is to get their client the lightest sentence possible or even acquitted. To accomplish these goals there are several types of defenses a lawyer can use.
A good option is the affirmative criminal defense. This type of defense tries to minimize the prosecutions use of evidence by showing it’s not true. An example would be if a client is charged with murder they might use an alibi witness to show he or she couldn’t have been there to do it. This would show the defendant could not have committed the crime and gives them an alibi for the time and place the murder was committed. This shows that the defendant couldn’t have committed the murder because they have an alibi for their time and location.
The insanity defense was made popular by a lot of movies and tv shows. The insanity defense is used occasionally in real life, though not as much as it’s depicted on tv, but it’s not as successful as you might think. The insanity defense says that the client did commit the crime, but their mental state prevents them from being able to tell right from wrong. This defense only works if the defendant was shown to have a serious mental illness or defect when the crime was committed. It is a dangerous defense because the client is openly admitting to the crime. If the jury finds the client to be in the right state of mind then the sentence they hand down might be harsher than if they had used a different defense.
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Coercion and distress is an affirmative defense lawyers might sometimes use that states their client was forced to commit a crime due to the use of unlawful force. The force itself does not actually have to happen, just a threat. Threat should be enough to satisfy this form of defense. These types of threats don’t have to be against the client. The threats could be against a friend or family member. Of course, this type of defense cannot be used if the client is responsible for the events that lead to the situation that caused the distress.
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There are many other types of criminal defense methods. Self defense states that their client and his or her actions would be considered criminal if the act wasn’t necessary to save their life or defend themselves.
Status of limitation is a defense that states the amount of time it takes for the prosecution to charge the client has elapsed so the charges must be dropped.
The defense of consent means you committed the crime but the victim consented to it.