Facing a criminal charge in Chicago is never an easy task, even if you have gone through the experience in the past. Each instance is different, especially if the charges or crimes are different. There is quite a bit you might not be prepared for when it comes to dealing with a criminal charge, which is why we have compiled this list of important questions to ask your criminal defense attorney after a criminal charge has been filed against you.
What Actions Should I Take?
Even though you were the person charged with the crime, you can still help the attorney move forward with your case. It is important to ask your attorney this question because he or she might have a list of things for you to accomplish or provide them as part of the defense strategy. For example, you might need to provide the attorney with documents that could help your alibi or other parts of the case. Do you need to enroll in a drug or alcohol abuse class? Find out as soon as possible what you need to do to aid the attorney working your case.
When do We Review the Evidence?
Once your attorney reviews all of the evidence the prosecution has against you, he or she should discuss it with you. The attorney should make copies of all the evidence, especially pictures, documents, and audio or video files. You are well within your rights to review this evidence since it will be presented in court during a trial. Ask the attorney when it’s time to review the evidence so you can determine the best course of action with your case.
What is the Evaluation of the Case?
Ask the lawyer to provide you with an honest evaluation of the case after reviewing the evidence presented and the charges filed. You do not want to work with a lawyer who will sugarcoat things for you or simply tell you what you want to hear. Find out the available defense strategies for the charges filed against you and if you are better off headed to trial or coming to a plea agreement with the prosecution.
Will I Need to Hire Expert Witnesses?
Expert witnesses are important to all types of criminal cases, but they are not always necessary or beneficial to every case. Find out from your attorney if you will need to hire expert witnesses for your case. If so, try to get an idea of what industry they should be from and how much they will cost for their appearances in court.
Are There Alternatives to Sentencing Available?
If this is the first time you are facing criminal charges in Chicago you might be eligible for alternative sentencing. Alternative sentencing is any type of sentence that could be handed out by the judge that does not involve spending time in jail. For example, maybe you are eligible for house arrest, community service, a work furlough, or a sheriff’s work program. There also could be standard probationary terms you could agree to that would satisfy punishment while receiving a less stringent sentence.
Contact an Experienced Defense Attorney Today
If you have been charged with a crime in Chicago, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced defense attorney about your situation. Call the office of David Freidberg at 312-560-7100 today to schedule a consultation and begin a defense to the charges. Consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney will aid in your efforts to fight any charges filed against you, even if the evidence presented is solid enough that you could risk going to jail. It is never a good idea to fight the charges on your own.
(image courtesy of Nik Macmillan)