If you’ve been arrested for a crime and you know you’re guilty, you’re probably thinking your best option is to just plead guilty and ask for leniency from the judge. While that may appear to be admirable, that’s far from your best decision. Today, we share some reasons why it is in your best interest to hire a lawyer even if you know you are guilty.
Guilty and Lawyering Up
There are a number of reasons why you don’t just want to plead guilty even if you know you’re guilty of the crime. It’s much better to hire a lawyer to defend your case. Here’s why:
1. Due Process – In every arrest, police must follow what’s called due process. This means that even if you’re guilty, there are certain steps that need to be taken in order to uphold your unalienable rights. For example, let’s say a police officer was following your car and they stopped you because they thought you had a warrant out for your arrest, but they actually typed your license plate into their system incorrectly and they thought you were someone else. After stopping you, they realize you’re drunk and arrest you for DUI. Since they pulled you over without true cause, you may be able to have the charges dropped, and this is just one example. If they don’t read you your rights, if they lie about your rights or their deny your right to council, you can get the charges dropped, even if you think it’s an open and shut case.
2. Plea Deals – Even if you think it’s an open and shut case, it’s going to take time and resources from the prosecution to secure that conviction. Many times, they are willing to agree to a plea deal in order to earn a lesser conviction and free up their workload. A lawyer can work to get you a plea deal or a better plea deal than you may have been able to get on your own, because they’ll be able to leverage the strong points of your case, even if you don’t think there are many. Instead of pleading guilty to a DUI, your lawyer may be able to get it reduced to a reckless driving ticket, which is much better for your record.
3. No Harm in Contesting – Finally, in some other instances, there is literally no harm in contesting your case. As we mentioned in our post explaining why you should always contest a disorderly conduct charge, the punishments for pleading out and being found guilty are the same, so why not challenge the case and see what happens. But, you’ll only know if it’s in your best interest if you consult with a lawyer, so pick up the phone and call one to learn more about your case.
For more information, or to set up a free consultation with one of our lawyers, reach out to Appelman Law Firm today.