Benefits of a Private Defense Attorney


Today's commentary focuses on the upsides of obtaining representation from a private defense attorney to handle your criminal case at the earliest possible stage.

A criminal case travels a long road, which presents many opportunities for an attorney to work towards a resolution. I think that a substantial benefit to promptly obtaining representation is the possibility of early intervention. A private attorney, who proactively works on a case, will constantly be thinking of ways to solve it. For example, immediately after an arrest or allegation, a private attorney can contact the investigating officer to determine where the case is heading.

Your attorney can also prevent you from helping the police build a case against you, by channeling all of your statements through the attorney, rather than you. Over the years I have seen many people essentially build criminal cases against themselves, where without their statement no case could have been filed. Many of their incriminating statements come from what seems like a casual discussion from a friendly police officer, "just trying to figure out what happened."

Sometimes, other persons involved in a criminal case are more interested in reimbursement, rather than a drawn out court process. With this in mind, if your attorney intervenes with the detective and other involved persons related to your case, it may be possible to steer it into a civil direction, rather than criminal court.

The local prosecutor may offer a Pre-Filing Diversion Program for certain types of cases. If your case is not highlighted for review for this option, and gets lost in the shuffle, you may lose a golden opportunity to solve your case.

Burbank Police Department also has a Community Relations Officer who mediates some potential criminal cases which occur within the city, if it will foster a long term solution to harmony in the community. Again, this option must be requested quickly by an attorney, who understands the prospects of this possibility.

Thus, as you see from these examples, if you wait until court to see what is going to happen, you can sometimes miss out on an effective solution. A good private attorney will evaluate your situation carefully, determine which steps may be effective for you, and provide guidance about what to do each step of the way.