Know Your Options Before You Plead Guilty to an Offense
4 years ago by Justin M. Schiks
Many courts encourage plea deals during the criminal process. A plea deal that a criminal defendant and his or her attorney makes with the prosecutor may involve a reduced criminal charge and/or a recommendation to the judge for a lighter penalty, in exchange for pleading guilty to the subject criminal charge or charges. It is ultimately up to the judge as to whether or not a particular plea deal will be accepted.
When the accused makes a plea deal in a criminal case, he or she effectively gives up several legal rights. Consequently, prior to entering into a plea deal, it is important that the accused be fully aware of all legal options which are open to him or her.
An experienced Woodbury, MN, criminal defense lawyer at JS Defense, PA., can explain and make sure that you completely understand all of your legal options prior to entering into any plea deal with the state prosecutor. Please give us a call today at (651) 968-9652 or contact us online to learn more about how we could assist you during every stage of your criminal case.
Chances of Prevailing at Trial
Prior to entering into a guilty plea, the accused gives up several legal rights, including the constitutional right to a trial by jury. At a criminal jury trial, the jury acts as the trier-of-fact and makes the final determination about a criminal defendant’s guilt or innocence based solely upon the evidence which is introduced at trial.
When making your decision, you should consider the likelihood that a jury may return a not-guilty verdict in your case. That decision should be based, in part, upon the number and type of legal defenses that you may have at your disposal – and their likelihood of success during a jury trial. A knowledgeable criminal defense attorney in Woodbury, MN, can help you decide whether to take your chances at trial or accept a pending plea deal that is on the table.
Rights that you give up by Pleading Guilty to a Criminal Charge
When you decide to enter a guilty plea in your criminal case, there are certain legal rights that you automatically waive. Therefore, when making your decision, you should be aware of the following legal rights which you waive upon pleading guilty:
- The right to testify at trial
- The right to cross-examine the state’s witnesses
- Appeal rights
Call a Woodbury, MN, Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
In some cases, it may be preferable to accept a plea deal in your case, rather than take the risk of going to trial. This is especially true in cases where the prosecution has strong evidence and is likely to prevail at trial. In any case, the knowledgeable legal team at JS Defense, PA., can help you decide whether to plead guilty and make sure that you understand all of the potential risks associated with a guilty plea.
For a free case evaluation and legal consultation with an experienced Woodbury, MN, criminal defense attorney, please call us today at (651) 968-9652 or contact us online for more information.