Share This Article
The role of lawyers in the criminal justice system is a critical one. They play an important role in defending people charged with crimes and protecting them against overreach by the government.
When you have been charged with a crime in Indiana, you should contact a skilled Indianapolis criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. A conviction could have severe consequences for your life and your future.
In the prosecution of a crime, prosecutors are charged with proving a defendant’s guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt.” This can be achieved through a variety of techniques, including witness testimony, police interviews and surveillance footage, as well as by presenting the case before a jury.
A jury consists of 6 people in a bench trial on a minor offense, and 12 people when a defendant is accused of murder or a Class A, B or C felony. Both parties are allowed to present evidence, and a judge must agree with the findings of the jury before a verdict can be reached.
If a prosecutor fails to prove a defendant’s guilt, the defendant may be entitled to have the case dismissed. However, this is rare and requires substantial effort on the part of the defense team.
The Court System
The Indiana court system is divided into two main levels: trial courts and appellate courts. The highest court in the state is the Indiana Supreme Court, which consists of five judges.
Generally, this level of courts reviews appeals from cases decided in the lower level courts. These cases may involve a criminal conviction or civil action for money damages.
An appellate judge can overturn a decision by the trial court when there was legal error in the case. Usually, this happens when a party who won in the trial court files an appeal with the Court of Appeals.
An appellate judge may also write a separate opinion, called a dissenting opinion, if he or she disagrees with the majority of the judges on the issue. This can be very helpful in getting an opinion that is more favorable to the party who lost in the trial court.
The defense is the part of the criminal justice system in which lawyers fight for you and your rights. It includes a variety of tactics, such as presenting intelligent defenses, fighting to maintain your innocence, advocating for ethical and constitutional violations, negotiating with the prosecutor, and making cogent arguments in court.
Defendants can also be eligible for pardons, clemency, or other forms of relief after conviction. These forms of relief can change the outcome of your case.
If you have been accused of a crime, talk to an Indianapolis criminal attorney as soon as possible about your legal options. They may be able to minimize the penalties you face, help you get the right job after a criminal charge or conviction, and even erase the negative consequences of your arrest or criminal record.
When you hire an experienced lawyer, they will help you gather records and documents, research your criminal history, prepare a petition for expungement, argue your case, and more. Contact Keffer Hirschauer LLP today for an initial consultation and to learn more about the defenses available for you.
The criminal justice system is a complex and difficult process. It can cause a great deal of shock, confusion, and pain.
In Indiana, you have certain rights as a victim or witness to protect your interests and help you get the justice that you deserve. These rights include the right to a trial by jury and the opportunity to appeal the decision of the trial court.
After a criminal case, you can appeal the judge’s decision to the Indiana Supreme Court. This can help you get relief from the conviction or sentence, such as a new trial.