If you are currently facing criminal charges in the State of Tennessee, you are undoubtedly concerned about the final outcome of your case. Given the fact that a criminal conviction can have serious consequences, both now and in the future, your concern is understandable. Hopefully, you plan to retain the services of an experienced Tennessee criminal defense attorney to defend you against the accusations and ensure that your rights are protected throughout the prosecution of your case. It is very easy to focus on what your defense attorney should or can do for your you; however, take a moment to consider the following five things you can do to help your Tennessee criminal defense attorney. Helping your defense attorney, after all, will ultimately benefit you and your defense.
- Be honest with your lawyer. For many clients, being honest with their attorney will not come easily. This may be because you are used to lying to authority figures or it could be because you don’t want to admit your guilt. Regardless of the reason, it can be extremely detrimental to your attorney’s ability to represent you. Your attorney will not ask you questions for which an answer is not necessary. He or she has no time to ask irrelevant questions. If your attorney does ask you a question though, you can count on it being a question that is relevant to your defense. There are few things worse for a criminal defense attorney than not knowing the answer to an important question that gets asked at trial. Therefore, if your lawyer asks you a question, give him/her an honest answer.
- Listen to the advice you are given. Remember that you hired your attorney to represent you and defend you. Does it make sense to hire someone and then not listen to the advice they give you? Would you pay a doctor and then completely ignore their advice and opinion? If you disagree with something, feel free to say so; however, do not ignore the advice your attorney gives you because you can bet that it is being given for a reason.
- Do not discuss the case with anyone. Your right to remain silent extends for the duration of your case. Be smart, and exercise it. Do not discuss the case with anyone. You can rest assured that the prosecution will do its best to find someone that you spoke to who is willing to testify that you admitted committing the crime. It could be a cell mate, a jaded girlfriend, or even a “friend” who is using you as his/her “get out of jail free” card. Even your mother could be subpoenaed by the State and forced to testify at a trial. So, the golden rule is to remain silent and not discuss the case with anyone.
- Stay out of trouble. This one is easier said than done for some clients, while for others it is a breeze. Just remember that if you are convicted, judges do not look favorably on people who are out on bond for one case and pick up another one.
- Trust your attorney. This goes along with #1 above. For your attorney to truly protect and defend you it is necessary for you to trust him/her. Keep in mind that your attorney has no incentive to work against you or your interests. On the contrary, doing a good job for you reflects well on the attorney. Try very hard to put your trust in your attorney.
By keeping these five things in mind you can help your attorney to do his/her job even better. If, at any time, you do not agree with something your attorney is doing, or you have a problem with the defense strategy developed for you, speak up and talk to your attorney. No not, however, sabotage your own defense by failing to keep those five simple rules in mind.
If you have been charged with a criminal offense in the State of Tennessee, it is in your best interest to consult with the experienced Tennessee criminal defense attorneys at Bennett, Michael & Hornsby. Contact the team today by calling 615-898-1560 to schedule your appointment.