Victoria McFadyen has extensive experience in handling criminal cases in the Florida Keys.
A criminal defense lawyers can do much more than simply question witnesses in court. A criminal defense lawyer will:
- Negotiate with prosecutors, often arranging for reduced charges and lesser sentencing
- Formulate sentencing programs tailored to a client’s specific needs, often helping defendants avoid future brushes with the criminal justice system
- Provide defendants with a reality check, a knowledgeable, objective perspective on their situation and what is likely to happen should their cases go to trial. This perspective is vital for defendants trying to decide whether to accept a prosecutor’s offered “plea bargain”
- Are familiar with important legal rules because many criminal law rules are hidden away in court interpretations of federal and state constitutions
- Are familiar with local court customs and procedures that aren’t written down anywhere (for example, a defense lawyer may know which prosecutor has the “real” authority to settle a case, and what kinds of arguments are likely to appeal to that prosecutor)
- Understand the possible “hidden costs” of pleading guilty which a self-represented person might never think about.
- Spend crucial time on your case
- Gather information from prosecution witnesses
- Hire and manage investigators, who may be able to believably impeach (contradict) prosecution witnesses who embellish or change their stories at trial.
People who have been recently arrested need to talk to a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. The most urgent priority is often getting a lawyer to help arrange release and provide some information about what’s to come in the days ahead.
If you believe you may be charged with a crime, or have been charged — DO NOT GIVE ANY STATEMENTS TO THE POLICE BEFORE SPEAKING WITH A LAWYER.–