“Will I have to go to jail?” is the number one concern once someone has been charged with a crime or if they are under investigation. The fear of going to jail prompts people to contact a criminal defense attorney right away.
Because the Defense Team with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. has a well-known reputation throughout the tri-county area as being successful, aggressive and effective criminal defense attorneys, we 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.
Astonishingly, many of the calls come from individuals who are already represented by lawyers. Often, we hear that their lawyers do not communicate well, have proven not to be trustworthy, are court-appointed, inexperienced, or indifferent to their plight. In most cases, the client simply does not have trust in the reliability of the lawyer’s answer, and they are seeking a second opinion.
Jail or prison time is a big deal. Basically, time in jail separates you from your life and your responsibilities. This can have a devastating effect on your family, job, school, reputation, etc. Unfortunately, jail could be the reason for losing a job, missing your child’s birthday, failing a class, in addition to so many other life events that will be impacted. Each person has their own reasons for not wanting to languish in jail.
Answering the question, “Will I have to go to jail?” is fairly complicated and merits some examination and consideration. The seasoned criminal defense lawyers with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. have decades of experience and can provide you with a free consultation to discuss this with you. You should be aware that this question is complex, and quite a bit of time and energy must be devoted to a conversation with you in order to analyze the factors of your case. The question regarding jail time usually requires a face-to-face meeting because you deserve a sound and reliable answer.
The judge will review certain factors about you when considering your sentence or consequence for the crime. Some of the most common factors are listed below. From the onset, you should know that sentencing is multi-faceted, and it certainly cannot be reduced to a short paragraph. Nonetheless, an extraordinary criminal defense attorney knows the best way to converse with the Judge to present you in the most favorable light.
Here are some examples of things the judge will consider:
- 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
- Whether the offender was cooperative
- Whether the defendant accepts responsibility
How to avoid jail or prison.
No sentence or jail time is determined based upon one factor alone; it is a combination of many things. It’s the job of a skilled criminal defense lawyer to be able to determine what factors will be most influential to the judge. A strong advocate for you will highlight the positive factors and your attributes and explain in a credible way why the negative ones should be considered less important.
Regrettably, not all criminal defense attorneys know how to handle a sentencing proceeding properly. Enormous preparation and time must be invested in sentencing for a client. Many attorneys come into the court, glance at the recommendation, and take the path of least resistance. For you, that means you get whatever the probation department deems appropriate or worse. In other words, if your lawyer does not fight for you, no one will. Experience is important but is not enough to be successful at sentencing. An effective lawyer will have a documented and credible reputation and track record of achieving favorable results.
LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. is frequently 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 them 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 a good lawyer might get. A great lawyer may be able to achieve an extraordinary result. When other lawyers think jail is unavoidable, the L&D Defense Team has been able to achieve sentences without incarceration or, in the alternative, with jail time that is far less than anyone thought possible. Our defense strategies are proven to work in your favor.
A Case Example of a Superior Result
For example, we recently handled a case in Oakland County with one of the tougher, more conservative judges. Our client had a significant criminal history with 9 prior felony offenses. He 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 another Resisting and Obstructing the Police as a result of an incident where he got into a fight with four local police officers. These are such serious charges, and with his criminal history, his sentencing guidelines called for a sentence of up to 23 months in prison.
After addressing the court, the judge gave a sentence of 60 days on tether work release. Our client didn’t spend one day in jail. He was able to keep his freedom and continue with his life. Other lawyers in the courtroom were shocked. This incredible outcome is virtually unheard of. We are routinely able to achieve similar results.
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 incarceration, please call LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation. If you would like for an attorney to promptly contact you, please complete a Request for Assistance Form.
The LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. firm handles 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!