Criminal defense attorneys at times get a not-so-flattering portrayal. This is because most people think that such lawyers only defend people who are guilty. But, the truth is that anybody who is a defendant in any criminal proceeding should hire a highly experienced criminal defense attorney, irrespective of his or her innocence or guilty.
As the advocates and protectors of the accused, such lawyers play a critical role in the justice system to ensure that an individual who is charged with a criminal act is given a chance to defend himself or herself. Indeed, every individual should understand the roles of a criminal defense lawyer.
What are the roles of a criminal defense lawyer?
There are various roles of a criminal defense attorney. Here are some of them.
1. They protect the rights of an accused
The main role is the protection of the rights of the accused people. They uphold the rights of the accused under the Bill of Rights as stated in the constitution. For sure, they are bound by the law to help their clients by ensuring that the criminal justice systems fairly treat them.
2. They defend the innocent
This is the second critical role of the criminal defense lawyer. Indeed, criminal defense lawyers can overturn criminal cases, especially where new evidence confirms the incarceration of innocent people who have been sentenced because of an incorrect guilt judgment.
Mostly, nearly all clients that hire criminal defense lawyers are somehow criminally culpable in the crimes that they have been charged with. On rare occasions, some of the clients that hire such lawyers are truthfully innocent.
3. They defend the guilty people
Most of the clients that are represented by criminal defense attorneys always fall into two categories. The first category is the clients that deny criminal responsibility. The second category is the clients who are taking responsibility for their own criminal behaviors.
Nearly all attorneys agree that the criminal clients that are most difficult to represent are the ones who are taking the responsibilities of their crimes. This is because it is easier to establish innocence when a lawyer thinks that his or her client is not guilty. Such lawyers face moral and ethical dilemmas every day. This is because they must deal with several situations where they know well that they have facilitated the release of a person who is guilty, risking their clear conscience and reputations.