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Frequently Used Criminal Defenses in the State of California

When a person is accused of a crime, depending on the gravity of the crime, the person can run the risk of losing his or her freedom, among other penalties. Therefore, facing a crime in the State of California can result in serious consequences. The following article will highlight a short list of common criminal defenses that could help a person who is facing a criminal charge.

It is important to understand that not every defense will be applicable to every crime. For more information about a specific criminal charge, seek the legal expertise of a lawyer who has experience in handling criminal defense cases. A skilled attorney can help build a strong case that could help a defendant minimize the potential penalties or remove the charges completely.

Legal Defense #1: Accidents

An accident can happen at any place and at any time. The State of California acknowledges accidents and can excuse a criminal conduct that could have happened accidentally. If a person commits a crime accidentally, meaning without the intention to commit a crime or negligence, it is likely that the individual will not face criminal responsibility. 

Legal Defense #2: Established Alibi

In its Latin context, an alibi means “to be in a different place”. When a person is accused of a crime but could not have committed the crime because he or she was in a different location at the time of the crime, then the accused has an alibi.

A skilled attorney could work to obtain corroboration to the accused’s alibi. Any form of corroboration could be vital in refuting the allegations held against the accused. Potential corroborations could include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Surveillance tapes,
  • Eyewitnesses,
  • Time-stamped purchase receipts, or
  • Other forms of concrete evidence

Legal Defense #3: Coerced Confession

Police officers may not use an overbearing measure to coerce a person to an involuntary confession. The following are examples of illegal interrogation strategies:

  • Continuing an interrogation even after the defendant has asked for an attorney,
  • Depriving the defendant of any food, water, and/or sleep,
  • Threatening to physically harm the defendant,
  • Threatening to further punish the defendant,
  • Hitting the defendant, or
  • Making a false promise to the leniency of the charges/ consequences in exchange for an admission.

Many studies have shown that the use of these unlawful tactics could cause innocent people to accept and/or admit a criminal action that was never committed. If it can be demonstrated that the confession was obtained through unlawful measures, a judge can choose to exclude the confession from the evidence or could drop the charges against the defendant.

Criminal Defense Demands the Legal Support of a Skilled Attorney

If you are being charged with a crime in the State of California, you should seek the immediate support of a specialized attorney who can represent you. A skilled attorney will study your case and analyze what defense tactics are right for your case. Facing criminal charges in California can result in various penalties, which may involve incarceration and fines; obtain the support of a proficient attorney who can champion for your rights.

The attorneys at Milligan, Beswick, Levine, & Knox, LLP are highly specialized in the field of criminal defense cases in the State of California. The firm has many years of experience in vigorously defending the rights of individuals facing criminal sanctions. Criminal cases demand the immediate action of a defense attorney; consult a specialized attorney today.

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Stephen Levine, is a Board Certified Specialist in Criminal Defense — an honor achieved by only the top criminal law attorneys in California. Mr. Levine has over 40 years of experience in criminal defense and family law serving Southern California, and is a highly regarded Super Lawyer as well as AV Rated attorney.