When facing criminal charges, there is a considerable amount of information you will need to consider to avoid jeopardizing your future and freedom. When approached by the prosecution and offered a plea bargain, you may be eager to accept. After all, it seems like a better deal than the charges you’re facing! However, there are many things you’ll want to consider before agreeing. You must speak with a Rockland County criminal defense attorney before accepting any offers. Keep reading to learn more about the plea deal process.
What Is a Plea Bargain?
When facing criminal charges, the prosecution may approach you with a deal. This allows you to plead guilty and be convicted of a crime in exchange for a lighter sentence or reduced charges. Though you will endure reduced penalties, you are still guilty of a crime that will follow you for the rest of your life.
It’s important to note that you do not need to wait for the prosecution to approach you for a plea bargain – you can request one. However, just like you do not need to accept the deal presented to you, the prosecution may not accept your offer.
Why Are They Beneficial?
A plea bargain is beneficial in that they allow you to know the outcome you’re accepting. When you go to trial, there are many uncertainties in the charges you face, whether or not the jury will find you guilty, and what sentence the judge will order. However, a plea deal reduces that unknown, as you know what charges or sentence you’ll agree to, and with no jury trial, you already know what the outcome will be.
Similarly, when there is insurmountable evidence against you, a plea bargain is your best deal for a lighter sentence. In many instances, when there is little doubt a jury will find you guilty, a deal is an ideal option for many as they can receive a reduced punishment. Though you will still be convicted of a criminal offense, you may face a significantly reduced prison sentence or lesser charges.
Should I Consult an Attorney Before Accepting?
Though you may jump at the chance to accept the plea deal offered, it is vital to consider the advantages and drawbacks of this before you agree. For example, someone unfamiliar with the law may accept a plea deal without realizing that the evidence the state has built their trial around was collected unlawfully. When evidence is gathered in a manner that violates the Constitution, it may be dismissed. However, if you accept a plea deal without consulting an attorney, you may never get the opportunity to prove that this evidence should not stand during the trial. Similarly, an attorney may be able to negotiate a better deal with the prosecution if necessary.
When charged with a crime, the most important thing you must do is contact an experienced criminal defense attorney from the Law Office of Kevin T. Conway. Our legal team will carefully examine every aspect of your case, including any plea deals offered by the prosecution to ensure you are getting the best possible outcome for your specific circumstances. Contact us today to learn more.