Oregon Criminal Lawyer

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If you've been charged with a crime, whether or not your are guilty, you may be facing jail time, fines and a criminal record. Having a felony record can seriously affect your life, making it more difficult to find housing and employment. If you have been charged with a felony or misdemeanor crime, hire a criminal attorney to represent you in a court of law.

Criminal law is the area of law that governs the penal code and the prosecution of those breaking the penal law. U.S. citizens have access to one of the greatest justice systems in the world. You should be immediately read your Miranda rights after arrest and before questioning, so that you are informed of some of those rights. You will be provided with a public defender if you cannot afford a private attorney.

Although criminal laws vary significantly from state to state, a crime can be defined as any act, or omission of an act, in violation of a public law forbidding or commanding it. Though there are some common law crimes, most crimes in the United States are established by local, state, and federal governments.

Crimes include both felonies and misdemeanors. Misdemeanors, which include vandalism, simple assault, public intoxication, drug possession, disorderly conduct and petty theft, are not as serious as felonies, which include homicide, rape, arson, grand theft and aggravated assault. Some crimes are charged as either misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the severity of the crime or the jurisdiction in which it was committed. Sometimes a felony charge can be pleaded down to a misdemeanor; similarly, a crime that is normally considered a misdemeanor can be upgraded to a felony if it is a repeated offense.

You can opt to have an attorney present when you are questioned so that your rights are protected. You do not have to incriminate yourself by giving information to investigators. Even if you cannot afford a private attorney, you have the right to be assigned a public defender.

The more serious the crime you have committed, the more serious the punishment you will face. Punishments can range from fines to incarceration, and can also include community service or mandatory completion of some treatment program or rehabilitation. Probation and suspended sentences are also fairly common. In some cases and in some states, the convicted felon will face the death penalty.

A criminal lawyer, who is familiar with not only the rules of the law but also the customs of court, can evaluate your case and decided the best course of action to take. Together you can decide to work out a plea deal or take the case to court.

If you are guilty, it may be in your best interests to take a plea deal if one is offered. The prosecutor may offer a reduced sentence in exchange for a guilty plea. Often in cases of domestic violence or drug possession, you may get a deal that requires you to undergo treatment or anger management, upon the completion of which your felony will be reduced to a misdemeanor.

Should your case go to court, your attorney will prepare for the trial, gather evidence and witnesses, and argue your case skillfully before a jury. It is the job of the prosecutor to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, whereas the job of the criminal attorney is to introduce as much doubt as possible to the judge or jury.

An experienced criminal lawyer will help you after you've been arrested and charged with a crime. When you are ready, seek out the services of an Oregon criminal attorney today to discuss the facts of your case. The American Bar Association (ABA) website features a lawyer locator, which can help you search for a criminal lawyer or attorney in Vermont. Access is free. There is no such thing as a minor criminal charge. Any misdemeanor conviction can damage your record and potentially limit your employment opportunities. Felony charges can result in significant periods of incarceration and probation.