Most people go through their entire life without ever being accused, or even suspected, of committing a criminal offense. Many of those who are accused of committing crimes are actually guilty of committing those crimes. Innocent people, however, do find themselves the target of a criminal investigation or even facing criminal charges sometimes. If you find yourself in just that situation, and you did not commit the crime in question, you may initially not see the need to hire a criminal defense attorney. A Murfreesboro criminal attorney explains why, even if you are innocent, you need to be represented by an attorney.
Our Criminal Justice System
If this is your first interaction with the criminal justice system, you are already at a disadvantage, whether you realize it or not. Although you have probably heard the expression “beyond a reasonable doubt” before in a movie or television show, you have likely not had a reason before to truly study the concept. In simple terms, it refers to the requirement that the State (through the prosecuting attorney), must prove that you are guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt” for you to be convicted of a criminal offense. That means that the prosecutor must prove each and every element of the crime with which you are charged. If you did not commit the crime, you may be tempted to count on the system to ultimately reach that conclusion. That is, indeed, what should occur; however, in reality, you should not blindly count on the truth to prevail. In reality, innocent people do end up being convicted of heinous crimes and sentenced to lengthy prison sentences. Although we have one of the best criminal justice systems in the world, when your future and your freedom are at stake you should not depend solely on the system to exonerate you.
“If I Am Innocent, Why Do I Need a Criminal Defense Attorney?”
It is a common reaction, and common misconception, to believe that only the guilty need an attorney. There are several important reasons why you should retain the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney if you are innocent, such as:
- Protecting your rights – as an accused, you have a number of Constitutional rights that are intended to protect you from exactly what could happen to you – being wrongly convicted of a crime. Those rights, however, can only help you if you understand them and know when and how to exercise them. A criminal attorney will ensure that your rights are used in the way they were intended to be used — to prevent an innocent person from being convicted of a crime.
- Understanding, and refuting, the “evidence” – the law enforcement officers investigating the case in question are charged with finding a suspect. All too often, once they identify a potential suspect they stop looking for alternatives. At that point, all the evidence gathered to date is often manipulated to try and be used against that suspect. If that suspect is you, you need a lawyer who can evaluate that alleged evidence and refute it, hopefully before the case goes any farther.
- Defending you at trial – unfortunately, your innocence doesn’t always mean you won’t end up in a trial fighting to prove that innocence. If a trial is inevitable, you need an attorney who can convince a judge or jury of your innocence. You need an experienced criminal lawyer who understands the trial process as well as what a judge or jury is likely to believe when deciding a defendant’s guilt or innocence. You need someone who is persuasive enough to convince the judge or jury that the State has wrongly accused you of a crime. If your case has gotten this far, you simply cannot depend solely on the truth to prevail. You need a professional fighting alongside you to prove that truth.
Contact a Murfreesboro Criminal Attorney
If you were recently arrested, or you are the suspect in a criminal case, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced Murfreesboro criminal attorney at Bennett, Michael & Hornsby as soon as possible to ensure that your rights are protected. Contact the team today by calling 615-898-1560 to schedule your appointment.