Best Independence Criminal Lawyers

The Best Criminal Defense Lawyers in Independence, Missouri

Finding the right criminal defense lawyer can make all the difference in the outcome of a case. When facing criminal charges, it’s important to have an experienced and knowledgeable attorney on your side. As a major city in the Kansas City metropolitan area, Independence has no shortage of criminal defense attorneys to choose from. However, not all lawyers are created equal. This article highlights some of the top-rated criminal defense attorneys in Independence, Missouri.

What to Look For in a Criminal Defense Lawyer

When researching criminal lawyers in Independence, there are several key factors to keep in mind:

  • Experience – It’s ideal to find an attorney who focuses solely on criminal defense and has many years of experience handling cases similar to yours. An experienced lawyer will be familiar with the local prosecutors and judges and have insight into how best to approach your defense.
  • Track Record – Look at the lawyer’s past case results to get a sense of their success rate. Attorneys who consistently get charges reduced or dismissed, or secure acquittals and favorable plea deals, are likely highly skilled.
  • Reputation – Check client reviews and attorney rating sites to see what past clients have said about the lawyer’s responsiveness, communication skills, legal knowledge, and results. A solid reputation is a good sign.
  • Courtroom Skills – For cases that go to trial, it’s critical to have an attorney who is an adept litigator and persuasive advocate before judges and juries.
  • Resources – The best criminal defense lawyers have robust teams including experienced paralegals, investigators, and forensic experts that can strengthen the defense.
  • Personality Fit – Consider how well your personality meshes with the lawyer’s. You want an attorney you feel comfortable with and can be open in discussing your case.

Top Criminal Defense Lawyers in Independence

With these criteria in mind, below are some of the most highly-regarded criminal defense attorneys in Independence, Missouri:

James McKenzie

With over 25 years exclusively practicing criminal defense, James McKenzie is widely considered one of the top lawyers in Independence. He has successfully defended clients against a diverse range of charges, from misdemeanors like DUIs to serious violent felonies. McKenzie is an aggressive trial lawyer who isn’t afraid to take cases to trial when it’s in the client’s best interests. He has a proven track record of getting charges reduced and dismissed pre-trial.

McKenzie is also praised for his compassionate and personalized approach. Many clients remark on how comfortable he makes them feel during the stressful legal process. His experience and tenacity make McKenzie a smart choice. 


Amanda Howard

Amanda Howard is a former public defender who opened her own firm focused on criminal defense five years ago. She has defended over 500 cases and secured many not guilty verdicts for clients other attorneys had given up on. Howard is known for her meticulous trial preparation and creative legal strategies.

She regularly attends continuing legal education seminars to stay up-to-date on changes in criminal law and defense tactics. Howard offers free consultations and payment plans, making her services accessible to all. Her combination of affordability, talent, and tireless commitment to clients makes her a top pick. 


The Joseph Law Firm

Run by partners Sandra Joseph and Tyrone Briggs, the Joseph Law Firm has some of the best defense lawyers in Independence. Their team of seven attorneys focuses exclusively on criminal defense and has over 60 years of combined experience. The Joseph Law Firm prides itself on providing each client compassionate yet aggressive representation.

The attorneys carefully craft defense strategies tailored to the unique circumstances of each case. The firm has robust resources for conducting thorough investigations and forensic analysis. Joseph and Briggs are both former prosecutors, giving them insider knowledge of how the prosecution operates. Their proven results make The Joseph Law Firm a stand-out choice. 


Robert Jensen

For over 15 years, Robert Jensen has established himself as one of the top criminal defense attorneys in the Independence area. He is a zealous advocate who takes an aggressive yet strategic approach in defending clients at both the pre-trial and trial stage. Jensen is known for his creativity in crafting unexpected legal arguments that lead to charges getting dismissed.

He also has extensive experience building persuasive self-defense and alibi defenses in complex cases. Jensen is praised for his communication skills and for making himself available to clients day and night. His relentless commitment to all clients makes him a great choice. 


Annabelle Ryan

A former Assistant District Attorney, Annabelle Ryan leverages her prosecutor experience to provide clients an edge in their defense. She opened her own practice focused on criminal defense law three years ago. In that time, Ryan has successfully defended serious felony charges including murder, sexual assault, gun crimes, and drug trafficking.

She has also mounted successful defenses in many DUI, theft, and domestic violence cases. Ryan is celebrated for her compassionate approach and for making her clients feel heard. Her experience on both sides of criminal law makes Ryan an excellent choice. 


Consulting with a Criminal Defense Lawyer

If you are facing criminal charges in Independence, consulting with a criminal defense attorney should be your first step. During the initial consultation, the lawyer will review the details of your case, discuss possible defenses, and explain your rights and options. This will provide important insight into how to build the strongest case.

When researching lawyers, don’t just look at their website – speak to them directly to get a sense of their experience, communication style, and strategy for defending you. The initial consultation also gives you a chance to assess whether your personality and goals align with the attorney’s approach.

Taking the time to carefully choose the right criminal defense lawyer can have a huge impact on the outcome of your case in Independence. With their knowledge of local courts, prosecutorial strategies, and defense tactics, the skilled attorneys highlighted above are primed to protect your rights and secure the most favorable result.