A criminal lawyer usually refers to a lawyer who is familiar with criminal law and devotes a substantial amount of time to the practice of criminal law. There are two types of lawyers in the criminal justice system. Prosecutors are the lawyer’s employed by the state or federal government to enforce the laws of the state or federal government and hold those responsible for violating the criminal laws of the state or federal government. Usually though, when you are referring to a criminal lawyer, you are referring to a lawyer in private practice who represents persons charged with criminal law violations of the state or federal government.

A good criminal defense lawyer is a must for anyone charged or being investigated for a criminal offense. Criminal defense lawyers do much more than just negotiating the best deal for their client. A good criminal lawyer understands the stress and uncertainty their client feels and can help ease and guide them through the legal process. Criminal lawyers also understand the nuances of the law which can result in a case being dismissed even if the client believed they would never win their case. For example, if an officer stops a vehicle without reasonable suspicion of criminal activity or probable cause that a traffic violation has occurred, the case may be dismissed even though the evidence obtained after a bad stop is overwhelming against the client. A good criminal defense lawyer is also someone who fully understands the trial process and the rules of evidence in court. The code of criminal procedure and the rules of evidence are the playbooks that prosecutors and defense lawyers must know to properly represent their clients at trial. A good criminal lawyer will be an effective advocate for you at the pre-trial stage as well as trial.

I have practiced law for more than 17 years. My early years were in the Tarrant County District Attorney’s office as a prosecutor. I have practiced criminal defense for the past 13 years, and I have an absolute love for the profession.

People often ask me how I can represent certain people charged with a violent or egregious criminal offense. Anyone who is charged with a crime in this country is afforded protection under the laws and constitution of the United States. It is very difficult to prove a person is innocent of a crime. That is why the law requires the state to prove a person is guilty beyond all reasonable doubt. If the state does not meet that very high burden, then the client is found not guilty. It is my job as a criminal defense lawyer to make sure the state and the police play by the rules. We do not live in a country where the state can accuse you of a crime, and then the burden falls on the accused to prove he didn’t do something. If it were not for good criminal defense lawyers all over this country defending our rights as citizens, you can bet the state and the federal government would slowly take away all our rights and freedoms one by one. It is difficult for some people to understand the importance of criminal defense lawyers until someone close to you is charged with a criminal offense they did not commit. You will then want a zealous advocate on your side. It is very important to find an attorney who understands all the implications to your criminal charge, and even more important to find an attorney who knows how to defend it. I understand what you are dealing with may likely affect the rest of your life, and I will promise to give your case the personal time and attention it will need to receive the best possible resolution for you. Please contact me at Stephen@stephenhandylaw.com or 817-284-2263.

Resources

Webster’s Dictionary: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/criminal%20lawyer

Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criminal_law