If you’ve been charged with a crime, your criminal law attorney will need to prepare a defense for you based on the facts and circumstances of the case. But what sorts of strategies might attorneys pursue toward this end, and what defenses are legally valid in court? To explain the various types of valid defense, Mark O. Grater Attorney at Law in Groton, Connecticut, offers some insight.
5 Defenses A Criminal Law Attorney May Use
Defendants are legally considered innocent by default, and it is the responsibility of the prosecution to present evidence to the court proving the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. A defendant who claims not to have committed the crime in question must simply avoid being proven guilty. If there are holes in the district attorney’s case, the defendant’s criminal law attorney needs only convince the jury that the accusation has not been concretely proven.
On the other hand, an alibi represents concrete evidence that the defendant could not have committed the crime. For instance, a witness may testify that the defendant was somewhere other than the scene of the crime at the time the crime was committed. Aside from witness testimony, the defense may present evidence like credit card receipts or phone records that could prove the defendant was elsewhere when the crime was committed.
In some cases, the defendant may admit to having committed the act in question but argue that the circumstances of the case absolve him of guilt for the crime. For instance, the defendant may claim that he acted in self-defense, in which case the defendant must prove that his decision to act was based on a reasonable fear and that the force used in self-defense was reasonable and proportionate.
A defendant who admits to committing a crime may also claim that officers of the law illegally encouraged him to commit the crime in question. This defense is difficult to prove and rarely comes into play because most police investigators are trained to avoid any behavior that could be called entrapment.
The insanity defense is incredibly complex, and the legal precedents involved may often seem contradictory or difficult to parse. However, there is a valid legal principle which holds that the defendant should only be punished if they possess the ability to distinguish right from wrong in a given situation. Defendants who are found not guilty based on this principle may still be considered dangerous to the public, however, and are unlikely to be immediately set free based simply on this defense.
An experienced criminal law attorney will be able to look at the facts of your case and determine which of the possible defenses will be most effective for you. If you are need of representation in a criminal case in Groton, Connecticut, seek out Mark O. Grater, who is experienced as a personal injury attorney, DUI attorney, and general criminal law attorney. Call Mark O. Grater Attorney at Law today at (860) 449-8059, or visit his website for more information.