What Does a Defense Attorney Do to Prepare for Trial?

If you’re facing criminal charges in Pennsylvania, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney who can prepare a strong defense and pursue the best possible outcome in your case. But what exactly does a defense lawyer do to get ready for a trial? Here’s an overview of the steps your attorney will take to prepare for your day in court:

  • Gather and Review Evidence — Your criminal defense lawyer will first gather all the facts of the case by hearing your side of the events, going through the discovery process with the prosecutor, and conducting an independent investigation into the alleged crime. Your attorney can visit the crime scene, interview witnesses, and look for inconsistencies and holes in the prosecutor’s evidence.
  • Develop a Defense Strategy — Your attorney will use their understanding of the events and the evidence to craft a strong defense. The most common defense is that the prosecutor failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you’re guilty of the crime of which you’re accused. They may support this defense by calling the credibility of witnesses into question, finding fault with the procedures police and other officials followed during your arrest, suggesting that the police planted, tampered with, or otherwise failed to handle evidence appropriately, and more. An effective defense strategy can lead to reduced or dropped charges.
  • Consult Expert Witnesses — Expert witnesses like forensic scientists, medical professionals, mental health professionals, social scientists, and other experts can provide beneficial testimony in a criminal trial. They may offer insight into your background, interpret evidence or test results, help the jury understand a complex concept, or otherwise support your attorney’s defense strategy.
  • Interview and Prepare Witnesses — A defense lawyer will interview witnesses who have knowledge of the events of the alleged crime that supports your defense. They’ll help these witnesses prepare to testify by asking them the questions they intend to ask in court and going through a mock cross-examination process. Your lawyer may go through a similar process with character witnesses who can speak about their relationship with you.
  • Support You as the Defendant — Your Pennsylvania defense attorney can support you beyond preparing for your trial. They’ll be available to answer your questions and address your concerns, and they’ll be looking out for your rights throughout the legal process.

It’s essential that you choose a criminal defense attorney with significant experience handling similar cases, a comprehensive understanding of the relevant laws, sufficient resources to dedicate to your case, and with whom you feel comfortable. Trusting your attorney and feeling like you can speak freely with them can make the process of preparing for a criminal trial much more manageable.

Contact a Pennsylvania Criminal Defense Lawyer Today

Your choice of an attorney has a significant impact on the outcome of your criminal case. You need a lawyer who is prepared to fight aggressively and put significant resources toward your defense. The team at Chieppor & Egner, LLC, brings years of experience to each case and is committed to protecting the rights of accused individuals. Contact us online or call us today at 717-393-1400 for a free consultation to learn more about your legal options.

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