Criminal Charges: Why You Need an Attorney

criminal charges

Receiving criminal charges can be very troubling and stressful. If you are convicted or a crime, there could be significant penalties imposed. To help you with the process and assist in raising defenses, you should contact the Provo Utah criminal defense lawyers from Howard Lewis & Petersen.

What happens in a criminal case?
Charges in a criminal case may result in an arrest or summons to appear at court. After you are charged, you are advised of your rights and given the opportunity to enter a plea. By pleading not guilty, you preserve the ability to raise defenses and have a trial.

Before a trial is heard, there will be an opportunity to receive and review discovery and evidence that the state may have. If you have defenses, then it may result in pretrial hearings to determine if evidence should be excluded or the case dismissed. An attorney can help ensure that any applicable defenses are properly raised.

An attorney will seek to negotiate with the prosecution to receive a just result. This could include dismissal of the case, a reduction in the charges, or specific sentencing recommendations. 

If a case cannot be resolved or is not dismissed, then you have the right to a trial. At trial, the prosecution must prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt. You will have the opportunity to cross examine witnesses and present a defense.

Why do you need an attorney?
Because criminal charges carry the potential for significant penalties, it is important to ensure that your rights are protected and that any applicable defenses are raised. An attorney will advise you of your options and what to expect. They will represent you in court and seek to obtain a just result.

If you are facing criminal charges, contact Howard Lewis & Petersen to speak with our Provo Utah criminal defense lawyers.

Posted February 14th, 2020