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Why You Need a Lawyer | Pacific County Criminal Defense Attorneys

Why You Need a Lawyer

You forgot to pay that speeding ticket you got while on vacation and now your license is suspended. Or you had one too many clams in your bag, but the officer says you can “just pay the fine instead of challenging the charge.” Maybe it is something far more embarrassing, like you got caught drinking and driving, but your BAC is far below the legal limit, or you didn’t realize you “bumped” that car backing out of the parking lot. Why on earth would you ever need a lawyer in one of these instances? Can’t you just go to court and “plead your case?”

Oftentimes, on an arraignment docket where people first appear in court to respond to a citation given to them by an officer or a charge filed by the prosecutor, I see people sit down at the shiny wood veneer table and say, “Isn’t there a way to handle this today?” This is usually where the prosecutor intervenes, stating “Your honor, if we can take a brief recess, I can speak to the defendant about this matter.”

This is the point in the story where bells, whistles, and sirens should be going off alerting you to danger like the robot in the series “Lost in Space.” We live in an age where almost everything is available to us instantly; Amazon has Amazon Prime, you can watch your favorite series right from your phone whenever you want, and even groceries can be delivered right to your door when you get home. So, why can’t we just get this whole criminal mess over with right here and now? The short answer is: You can, but do you know the consequences of doing so?

Before you to choose to go unrepresented in your case, it is always wise to consult with a lawyer; and not just “any lawyer,” not the one you see on television. You’ll want a lawyer who sits down with you, listens to you, answers your questions, and looks at the case not only through a trained eye, but also through your eyes, through the officer’s eyes, and, most importantly, through the eyes of a juror who may ultimately hear the facts.

The right lawyer can, and will, tell you whether the officer who stopped you did so without violating the rights we all share. The right lawyer will tell you what the consequences of a conviction will be, and what the consequences will be if you accept a reduced charge, i.e. employment or future employment, whether you can travel to other countries, whether you can remain in this country, how it will appear on your record, whether your gun rights may be impacted, and how it will look and be treated by other courts in the future. The right lawyer can tell you whether what you did was actually a crime; did you have the intent needed to commit it, or is the law clear and understandable?

Will a prosecutor be there for you like a defense lawyer? Never. Although prosecutors are lawyers, they have no duty to represent your interests, and anything you tell them can be used against you. Nothing you tell them will be held in confidence, nor will it be considered privileged information. If you made no statements to officers on the day you were contacted or cited, this is their chance to judge the strength and weakness of your case based on information that otherwise would never be heard or even admissible at trial.

So, when it comes to criminal matters, no matter how small the charge may be or how insignificant it may seem, it is always best to consult with a criminal defense lawyer first. You may ultimately decide not to hire one, but at the very minimum you’ll be far more knowledgeable about what can happen in your case. Don’t trade away your freedom and future for the sake of “trying to save time” by “just handling it today.” Give our Pacific County criminal defense attorneys at the Guy Glenn Law Firm a call to get the answers you need.

We can be reached at (360) 869-0088, or you can fill out an online contact form for a quick response. Your first consultation is FREE!