Have you been arrested for crime-related charges? If so, you might be wondering whether you should hire a lawyer or just represent yourself. Although you have a legal right to self-representation, going this route will reduce your chances of walking free. When it comes to criminal matters, it is best to be represented by a Rochester MN criminal attorney because they know the law and work to protect your rights. The following are some scenarios that tell you should not represent yourself in a criminal case:
The Pre-Trial Process is Not Easy to Navigate
Did you know that the outcome of your case can be influenced before the selection of the jury?
When you will be questioned by the police, they may use your words against you in a court of law. The officer who will interview you may try to get evidence that may incriminate you or get a confession from you. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can run interference, stop the questioning, and ensure you don’t say something self-incriminating.
However, there are other steps you should take in the process and the interrogation is just the first. During the pre-trial stage, plea negotiations also occur. A good attorney with experience in reviewing evidence and evaluating the strength of the prosecution’s case will help you strike a favorable plea agreement.
You May Not Have the Legal Knowledge to Represent Yourself
During the pre-trial stage, you may have to file a motion for setting aside a complaint or suppressing evidence. Your case requires you to understand and state the law and case law that secure your argument. Also, you will have to go through the discovery process and ensure you share and get related information.
In the trial stage, you need to have knowledge of how to pick jurors. You should be aware of the questions you can ask, why you should be allowed to excuse jurors, and the number of possible jurors you can excuse. The actual trial requires you to know what you are doing. You will be required to create an opening argument, prepare some questions for the witnesses, and make your closing statement. A criminal defense lawyer is knowledgeable, trained, educated and experienced in navigating the aspects of criminal trials. They know the motions that must be filed and when to file them. Also, they can put forth a strong defense that makes the jury doubt the argument of the prosecution. Without formal training and knowledge of the law, it will be difficult for things in your case to fall into place.