Will I have to go to jail?

Because of my reputation as a known, successful Michigan Criminal Defense Attorney, I get calls constantly from people who are charged with various misdemeanor and felony offenses and wonder if they are going to have to do jail or prison time. Amazingly, many of the calls come from individuals who are already represented by lawyers that do not communicate well, have proven not to be trustworthy, are court-appointed, or are inexperienced.

I wish the answer was simple to these questions but it is fairly complicated. Although the criminal defense lawyers with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. do offer a free consultation, these questions are complex enough that quite a bit of time and energy must be expended before a reliable analysis can be offered. The question is important enough that you deserve a reliable answer.

Sentencing Factors

Common factors that judges consider when considering a sentence include:

  • Whether the offender is a “first-time” or repeat offender
  • Whether the offender was an ACCESSORY (helping the main offender) or the main offender
  • Whether the offender committed the crime under great personal stress or duress
  • Whether anyone was hurt, and whether the crime was committed in a manner that was unlikely to result in anyone being hurt
  • Whether the offender was particularly cruel to a victim, or particularly destructive, vindictive, etc.
  • Whether the offender is genuinely remorseful.

How to Get the Best Possible Result

No sentence is determined based upon one factor alone and it is the job of an experienced criminal defense lawyer to be able to determine what factors will be most influential to the judge and then highlight the positive ones and explain in a credible way why the negative ones should be considered less important.

My partner, Randy, and I are hired by other lawyers in Southeastern Michigan to handle the sentencing for their clients or to consult with them regarding a particular sentence to help formulate effective mitigation arguments. The truth of the matter is that achieving a favorable sentence is more of an art than it is a science. An average lawyer may obtain a sentence that is not as favorable as on a good lawyer might get. A great lawyer may be able to achieve an extraordinary result. When other lawyers think jail is unavoidable, we have been able to achieve sentences without incarceration or with jail time far less than anyone thought possible.

A Case Example of a Superior Result

For example, I recently handled a case in Oakland County with one of the tougher, more conservative judges. My client had 9 prior felony offenses and was recently released from parole. He had been to prison once before for Resisting and Obstructing the Police. On this occasion, he was charged with Resisting and Obstructing the Police as a result of an incident where he got into a fight with four local police officers. His sentencing guidelines were for a sentence between 2 months and 23 months in prison. The sentence ended up being 60 days with tether work release. My client didn’t spend one day in jail. Needless to say, the other lawyers in the courtroom were shocked. My client had been loyal to me for over 10 years and there was no way I was going to let him down.

We Can Help You

If you are looking to avoid jail time or you are in a position to help a loved one with finding legal representation that will maximize the chances of avoiding jail or prison, please call LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation.

We handle misdemeanor charges, felony charges, probation violations, and sentencing issues in Oakland County, Wayne County, Washtenaw County, Livingston County, Macomb County and throughout Southeastern Michigan. We are not afraid to win!