How Do Criminal Lawyers Investigate My Case?
How Do Criminal Lawyers Investigate My Case?
Getting accused of a crime is scary. Like, really scary. It can feel like your whole world is crashing down around you. One minute you’re just living your life, and the next minute the cops show up at your door saying you’re under investigation. Yikes!
So what do you do when you find yourself in this situation? Well, the first thing you gotta do is take a deep breath. I know it’s easier said than done, but freaking out isn’t going to help anything. Once you’ve collected yourself a bit, it’s time to call a criminal defense lawyer.
I know lawyers can be expensive, but trust me when I say hiring one is so important. Trying to navigate the criminal justice system alone is crazy hard, and you really need someone in your corner who knows the ropes. The stakes are just too high to try to go it alone.
So let’s say you go out and get yourself a badass criminal defense attorney. What exactly are they gonna do once you bring them onboard? I’m glad you asked! Here’s a little peek behind the curtain at how criminal lawyers like myself investigate cases:
Step 1: Reviewing the Evidence
The first thing I’m gonna want to do is look at whatever evidence the cops and prosecutors have gathered so far. This could be documents, photos, videos – anything they’re planning to use against you. I need to analyze it all thoroughly to figure out what exactly their case is built on.
My goal here is to start poking holes in the evidence and figuring out what I can dispute or get thrown out. The less evidence they have, the weaker their case will be. I’m looking for sloppy police work, incorrect assumptions, procedural errors – anything I can grab onto to start unraveling their case.
Step 2: Interviewing Witnesses
Next up, I’m going to want to get my own take from anyone who might have useful info about the case. Witnesses, experts, even the police and prosecutors. I’ll start by just talking to folks informally to get their side of the story.
Later on I might have to do formal interviews or depositions, but for now just having informal chats can help me flesh out the facts from different perspectives. The key is gathering as much info as I can to help me advocate for you effectively.
Step 3: Visiting the Crime Scene
If there’s an actual crime scene related to your case, you better believe I’m going to want to check it out myself. I’ll head down there and look around, take some photos and video, analyze sight lines, etc.
Getting a first-hand look at the scene helps me match up the physical evidence with witness statements. It also lets me see if there’s anything fishy or anything the cops might have overlooked. The more familiar I am with the scene, the better.
Step 4: Researching the Law
Every case is different, so I’ll need to take a deep dive into the specific laws and precedents that apply to the charges against you. This helps me figure out what options we have for getting charges reduced or dismissed.
I’ll look at similar cases, analyze how the relevant statutes have been interpreted, and develop a legal framework for possible defenses. The stronger my understanding of the law, the better I can advocate for you.
Step 5: Developing a Theory of the Case
At this point, I’ll take everything I’ve learned and start piecing together a narrative that we can use as our defense. This theory of the case will explain your side of the story, rebut the prosecutor’s accusations, and raise reasonable doubt about your guilt.
I have to consider both the facts and the law to build a compelling defense theory. My goal is to tell a believable story that aligns with the evidence and gives the jury ample reason to find you not guilty.
Step 6: Mounting a Defense
Now we get down to business! With my theory of the case in hand, I can start actually mounting your defense by filing motions, interviewing expert witnesses, requesting forensic analyses, etc.
My goal at this stage is to shore up our defense by introducing evidence and testimony that contradicts the prosecution’s version of events. I’m also trying to get as many of the charges against you dismissed as possible.
The more I can chip away at the prosecution’s case, the better position we’ll be in. It’s all about slowly shifting the odds in your favor and controlling the narrative.
Step 7: Plea Bargaining
Most criminal cases actually get resolved through plea bargains rather than trials. So at some point I’ll sit down with the prosecutor and see if we can negotiate a deal for you to plead guilty to a lesser charge.
My goal is to get you the lightest sentence possible through bargaining. I’ll use all the evidence I’ve gathered and defenses I’ve prepared to try and back the prosecutor into a corner so they’re eager to make a deal.
Step 8: Going to Trial
If we can’t reach a satisfactory plea deal, then we’ll have to take our chances at trial. I’ll continue building the strongest case I can by filing motions, interviewing witnesses, selecting experts, etc.
During the trial itself, I’ll argue motions, cross-examine witnesses, object to evidence – basically do anything I can to introduce reasonable doubt. My goal is to show the jury all the flaws in the prosecution’s case against you.
The bottom line is that I’ll leverage all my investigative and legal skills to fight tooth and nail for the best possible outcome for you. And I’ll be by your side advising you every step of the way. So take a deep breath – you’ve got this!