Indiana Criminal Lawyer

Call (888) 519-6013 to speak with a criminal defense attorney.

Indiana criminal attorneys are specialized legal representatives who are knowledgeable in the nuances of the criminal laws in their state. An individual facing a criminal charge must seek assistance from a qualified criminal lawyer to represent him/her in a court of law and ensure that he/she receives a fair trial. Filing written charges or a complaint begins the criminal justice process and sets the court proceedings in motion. The court may then look at appointing a grand jury or having a preliminary hearing, depending on the jurisdiction where the crime was committed. To be convicted, an accused must be proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, either by the prosecutor or the state counsel.

Criminal law, also known as penal law, involves prosecution by the government of a person for an act that has been classified as a crime. A crime can be broadly defined as an act that violates some law or regulation which prohibits it.

Crimes may be categorized as felonies or as misdemeanors, depending on the seriousness of the crime, the nature of the crime, and the length and degree of punishment that it warrants. Felonies are punishable by a jail term of over a year, usually in a state or federal prison, while a misdemeanor conviction might only merit a fine or a short jail term, generally in a county or local jail. Felonies include serious crimes such as kidnapping, burglary, treason, rape and homicide. Misdemeanors are crimes such as vandalism, trespassing, petty theft, loitering, vagrancy and prostitution. Of late, the common law system of classifying crimes as felonies and misdemeanors is gradually being replaced with newer systems. Several newer statutes classify crimes by the degree of severity termed as the Model Penal Code.

Once the formal presentation of charges in open court begins, the criminal attorney will present the case details investigated and question witnesses as required. The lawyer will advise whether the defendant can plead guilty or not guilty to the charges. The accused may be able to achieve a plea deal, in which he or she agrees to either plead guilty and/or complete some sort of mandatory treatment, such as drug or alcohol counseling or anger management classes, in exchange for a reduced sentence or lesser charges. This helps ease the burden on often overloaded court dockets, saving the state both time and money.

An experienced criminal lawyer will recommend a plea bargain for a client only after ascertaining the strength of the evidence that will be presented by the prosecutor based on the details revealed by the prosecutor before trial, and any potential penalties to the defendant. The accused can also file for bail based on the guidance of the defense attorney. The bail money or property that an accused person puts forth as security guarantees to the court that the accused will appear for further criminal proceedings and the sentencing if applicable. Thus seeking a qualified legal representative is in the best interests of an accused facing criminal charges.

If your case should go to trial, a criminal attorney can be invaluable. Your criminal attorney can help mount the best defense possible in order to ensure that you get a fair trial. If you are convicted, the attorney can help you through the stages of sentencing and appeals, as well. Although you are allowed, by law, to defend yourself in a court of law, unless you have significant legal training and experience, this route is not recommended. After all, your future and your liberty are at stake.

If you have been accused of a crime, retain a criminal attorney. The American Bar Association can help you locate a skilled lawyer in the area of criminal law under which you have been charged. Access to the American Bar Association (ABA) website is free and will help you locate a lawyer in your area.