What Is the Role of a Defense Attorney in a Criminal Case?

Facing the criminal justice system is a daunting prospect. If you face criminal charges in Wisconsin, contacting an experienced and aggressive criminal defense lawyer is always in your best interest because your life, financial stability, and reputation are on the line. Understanding their role will help prepare you for what you can expect while working with a lawyer on your criminal case.

What a Criminal Defense Lawyer Will Do for You

The role of a Wisconsin criminal defense attorney is multifaceted. An attorney’s primary duty is representing and advocating for their client throughout the legal process. Some of the critical elements of that role involve:

  • Providing Legal Counsel – A defense attorney needs to take the time to get to know their client and all the fact-specific elements of their unique situation. With this information, they can advise their client of their legal rights and the implications of the charges they face. They can also guide them through the complexities of the Wisconsin criminal justice system and craft a personalized defense strategy.
  • Conducting an Investigation – Criminal defense attorneys investigate the incident’s circumstances to thoroughly understand the situation. This investigation can help them devise a defense plan that best addresses the unique aspects of the case. A thorough investigation will include gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, and examining police procedures to build a strong defense.
  • Building a Case Strategy – Based on the evidence and their investigation, a skilled defense attorney develops a strategic defense plan and the most effective ways to challenge the prosecution’s case.
  • Negotiating with Prosecutors – A criminal defense attorney also has the resources and knowledge to engage in plea negotiations. A plea bargain can reduce charges and avoid the need to go to trial.
  • Filing Pretrial Motions – When a case moves toward trial, a defense attorney can prepare and file motions to challenge evidence or procedural issues that could benefit their client’s case. Examples of these motions might seek to suppress evidence obtained unlawfully or to dismiss charges.
  • Representing the Client at Trial – If a case heads to trial, a defense attorney can aggressively represent their client. A defense attorney must cross-examine witnesses, present evidence, and make arguments to persuade the judge or jury.
  • Protecting the Client’s Rights – Throughout the legal process, a seasoned defense attorney ensures their clients’ constitutional rights are upheld.
  • Providing Post-Trial Advocacy – In the event of a conviction, defense attorneys may continue to represent their client during sentencing and appeals processes.
  • Offering Client Support – A skilled Wisconsin defense attorney must provide more than legal advice and effective representation. They also provide emotional support and guidance to clients experiencing a stressful and overwhelming legal process.

In short, a defense attorney‘s role is to vigorously advocate for their client’s best interests and achieve the most favorable result possible for their circumstances.

Contact a Wisconsin Criminal Defense Attorney Now

If you face criminal charges in Wisconsin, you don’t have to go through the legal process alone. You deserve effective and responsive legal representation. At Nicholson Goetz & Otis, S.C., our skilled legal team wants to help defend and protect your future. Contact our office now and set up a confidential legal consultation.