You truly believe that you were just in the wrong place at the wrong time, but you’re now facing criminal charges. You want to get out of this without a conviction if at all possible, which is a good goal to have.
Your attorney is there to help protect you as much as possible. This may mean fighting at trial to see the case against you dismissed and to see you proven innocent. It may mean negotiating for a reduced sentence and penalties that you’re satisfied with.
If you will be going to trial, it’s important for you to know what is going to happen. A complete trial has six stages including:
- Choosing the right jury
- Giving opening statements
- Listening to witness testimonies and cross-examining witnesses
- Giving closing arguments
- Jury instruction
- Jury deliberation with a final verdict
There are some cases that will be heard without a jury. In those cases, you’ll only have your case heard by a judge.
In a traditional trial, your attorney will talk to you about the jury first. They have an opportunity to exclude some jurors who may be biased or who are more likely to choose a verdict that would negatively affect you.
After this, your attorney will give an opening statement. This is a great opportunity to tell the jury what happened from your perspective and to declare your innocence at trial. It’s after this that witnesses speak and are examined before your attorney gives a closing statement reminding the jury of your claims.
This process can seem daunting, but your attorney will be there to walk you through every step of the way.