Did you know that over 90% of criminal cases never even go to trial? It's true.
The most common way for a case to resolve is in a negotiated plea bargain. But how can you be sure you are getting the best possible plea offer from prosecutors in Nevada? You need an attorney who is laying the groundwork from the day you are arrested to obtain a winning negotiated result in your case.
When Do You Get a Plea Offer?
Regardless of whether you have been charged with a felony or a misdemeanor, the next step in your criminal case is an opportunity for both sides to participate in negotiations. The initial plea offer will generally be made after your initial arraignment, but before your scheduled preliminary hearing, at least when you have been charged with a felony.
What is a Plea Offer?
A plea offer is an offer to compromise or negotiate your case. Even after you are arrested, you are presumed innocent. It is the prosecution's burden to prove its case against you at trial. A "plea offer" is an agreement by the defendant (through his or her defense attorney) and the prosecutor.
The agreement generally takes this basic form: the defendant agrees to plead guilty, and the prosecution agrees to dismiss some charges, or even all charges, on the condition that the defendant meet certain conditions like paying a fine, doing community service, or going to counseling. Your defense attorney might also get the prosecution to agree to give you probation rather than prison time if you've been charged with a serious felony.
Why a Plea Offer?
Many defendants are confused about how plea offers work, why they exist, or how a good attorney can use the criminal justice system to "win" your case without going to trial. Why would the prosecution agree to give you a winning result? How can they be convinced you deserve leniency?
There are numerous factors that prosecutors consider. The prosecutor will look at the evidence against you: is it overwhelming, is it a close case, or does it look like the defendant might actually be innocent? Prosecutors are also human, and most people do not work long hours if it can be avoided. If prosecutors took every case to trial, they'd never have time to sleep.
The simple reality is that prosecutors do not want to take cases to trial because it is time consuming. This gives defendants some leverage – even when they are clearly guilty – to negotiate a more lenient plea offer.
What can Liberators Criminal Defense Do?
It is not all up to the prosecutor. In any negotiation, it takes two to tango. The right defense attorney can make all the difference in your case's negotiation.
There are basically two ways a defense attorney can get you a better deal: first, your defense attorney can show there are problems with the prosecution's case, such that the prosecution might fail to convict if the case were to go to trial. Your attorney can file motions, investigate the prosecutor's witnesses, or even get the Court to exclude evidence. This puts pressure on the prosecutor to make a better offer.
Second, your defense attorney can show the prosecutor that you are especially deserving of leniency. This can be done by showing all the good you've done in your life prior to this mistake, by showing that you have a good career, or by showing you had a rough childhood and just need some counseling.
Every case is different and needs its own unique strategy. Call Liberators today so we can walk you through the game plan for your particular case that leads to a winning negotiated plea bargain.