The aftermath of an arrest on criminal charges can be a confusing time for a Florida resident. Determining whether the charges are misdemeanors or felonies is important, as is determining what evidence law enforcement officials and prosecutors will attempt to use to prove the case. For arrestees in Florida, knowing the available legal options is crucial.
For starters, if the evidence in the case is weak, it may be possible to convince the prosecutor that the charges should be dismissed, or at least some of the charges should be dropped, if there are multiple charges involved in the case. Prosecutors need to focus their efforts on cases in which the evidence of a criminal act are strong, so, if that is not the case with a defendant’s charges, getting the charges dismissed could be a possibility, although probably a slim one.
In other cases, it may be best for the defendant to begin plea negotiations with the prosecution. In doing so, the defendant could plead guilty to lesser offenses, or receive a more lenient sentence. This can be especially true with misdemeanor offenses, which are less serious than felony offenses.
Finally, some criminal defendants may need to take their case all the way to a trial, either in front of a judge or in front of a jury. After all, it is the prosecution’s burden to prove the case “beyond a reasonable doubt.” If a defendant does not think the prosecution can meet that burden, it may be worth it to put the prosecution to the test. For more information about how our law firm helps people facing misdemeanor or felony charges, please visit our criminal defense website.