Murder 1st Story
Los Angeles Murder Defense Attorney
MURDER CHARGES REQUIRE THE TOP MOST SEASONED CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY
IF YOU HAVE A LOVED ONE CHARGED WITH HOMICIDE / MURDER WHAT TYPE OF ATTORNEY DO WE NEED?
In my experience there are few attorneys in Los Angeles that are equipped to deal with these type of cases. When all of the marbles are on the line there is no substitute for an attorney that is battle tested and has successfully tried many homicide trials in the L.A. Courthouses. The problem is that many attorneys will not touch these type of cases because of the serious stakes that are typically on the line. In the past 25 years of practicing criminal defense, I would say in my mind there is a short list of attorney that are skilled enough to successfully win a murder case. Further, I have noticed that many attorneys will not even touch these cases because all they typically do is negotiate cases and not actually fight them. That fact, combined with the reality that the client is usually looking at spending the rest of their life in prison, is really scary for an unseasoned criminal defense attorney.
It is key that you meet with the attorney you are considering hiring and make sure that they will be the one handling your case. Beware of law firms that are using other attorneys to actually litigate a particular case, versus the attorney that is advertised. You want an attorney that can tell you, after they have heard what the client is up against, what a potential road to victory might be for the charged person. Let them explain to you what has to be proven by the prosecutor in order to obtain a conviction in the case. Having negotiated and litigated murder cases for 25 years has given me an inside peek at how the prosecutors and judges deal with these cases. First, the best investigators are tasked with gathering all of the necessary evidence to prove the case. This is actually nice because you can rely on them to do a thorough job and when my investigator comes in, he is able to build on what has already been done and hopefully get some good stuff for the defense. Additionally the prosecutors that deal with these cases are usually (not always) seasoned and are easy to deal with and will not try and do anything underhanded related to the prosecutor of the case. Last, the judges are typically fair in these type of cases because they know someone’s life is on the line and that the case will certainly be reviewed on appeal because of the consequences of a conviction.
When you meet with a potential attorney, I would suggest discussing other cases that they have litigated, similar to the case you are considering hiring them for. What you are really trying to do is get a feel for the type of person and attorney they are. They will be the one arguing to make sure that your loved one is not sent to prison for the rest of their life…you better make sure you feel comfortable with them! When I meet with clients or their family, I try and flush out all of the details of the case and discuss it with them. Then I am usually able to give them an idea of what I will do to litigate the case, what the chances of success are and whether it is a case that should go to trial or not. Ultimately the person being charged with murder will make the final decision on whether or not they go to trial. I feel it is my job to make sure my clients are fully informed and educated on the case and the likelihood of success before they make that all important decision to put their fate in the hands of a jury and their attorney.