Getting charged with possession, distribution, or trafficking of drugs in Overland Park, KS can be a scary experience, especially if you’ve never dealt with the criminal court system before. Hiring an experienced drug charge lawyer can help you navigate the legal system to receive the best outcome possible.
Why You Need to Have an Experienced Drug Charge Lawyer in Overland Park, KS
They Know the Legal System
Drug laws are complicated, even for people who work with them on a daily basis. If you’ve never been previously charged with a drug offense, you probably don’t understand how the laws can be applied to convict you of criminal activity. An experienced lawyer will be able to advise you of the possibilities in your case, both good and bad. You need to understand the potential consequences of your alleged crime before you can determine a strategy to mitigate them.
An attorney who’s experienced in drug charges will know exactly what your charges mean and can explain them to you in layman’s terms. Then, your attorney will be able to develop a strategy to handle your case to get you the minimum sentence possible. Your lawyer may even be able to identify nuances in your case that could keep you out of jail entirely. Without their insight, you might not know how to best argue your mitigating factors.
They Know the Prosecutors
To a prosecutor, you’re just someone who, in their eyes, committed a drug crime and who should pay the price. However, to your lawyer, you’re a human being who’s made a mistake or who may be improperly charged. Part of your attorney’s job is to make the prosecutor see you the way your lawyer sees you so that they understand the impact of their prosecution on your life. Having a relationship with the prosecutor can help facilitate this process.
The relationship between your attorney and the prosecutor is also vital for any type of plea bargain. An experienced attorney will know what the prosecutor expects to get in return for a lighter sentence. You may have to take drug education classes or perform community service, but it’s possible that your attorney can work with the prosecutor to keep you from going to jail or from losing your driver’s license, both of which are potential consequences of drug charges.
They Have Handled Hundreds of Drug Cases
Experienced drug offense attorneys will have handled hundreds of cases that are similar to yours. Of course, none will be exactly the same, but your lawyer won’t have to build a case from the ground up. They already know which strategies work best and which approaches are most effective with judges and juries. If you try to defend yourself, you’re basically going in blind, with no way of knowing if your approach has been successful in the past or not.
This experience is vital to your case because you want an attorney who never gets rattled during negotiations or in court. A lawyer who’s seen hundreds of drug cases will rarely see anything new, and will therefore know how to handle situations that come up unexpectedly. This is a critical component in a case where you’re facing prison time and a significant fine for a drug charge. Having someone who’s been there before can give you confidence in your case.
They Will Fight For Your Rights
A major reason for hiring an experienced drug charge attorney is to have someone on your side as you go through this difficult process. Attorneys know that when you’re charged with a drug offense, you may not actually be guilty, despite what the police or prosecutor thinks. You want someone who believes in you and will fight for you in negotiations with the prosecutor and in court. Even if you’re convicted, having a lawyer to represent your interests is important.
If you decide to represent yourself, you are missing out on valuable emotional support that a lawyer can provide. Even when things look bleak, an attorney will be able to offer you hope that your case can still turn out in your favor. They’ll explain their strategy every step of the way so you know where your case stands at all times. Often, things look worse when you don’t know what’s going on, and that won’t happen with an attorney.
They Can Keep You Out of Jail
While an attorney may not be able to prevent jail time in all cases, you’re much less likely to do time in prison if you have representation, especially if this is your first offense. They have negotiating skills and power that you just don’t have on your own. This is because they know about alternate options like drug classes and community service that can be substituted for jail time. They know how to emphasize mitigating factors to bolster your case.
Your attorney’s entire goal is to get you the lightest sentence possible or to get the charges dismissed entirely, and they’ll work tirelessly to achieve this goal. Even if you have to do some jail time, an attorney can probably get you significantly less than the maximum allowed under the law. This is because they know how to highlight the factors in your case that mitigate the effects of the crime. Weighing these factors is how your sentence is determined.
They Can Save You Money
Even though you’ll have to pay for your defense and any court fees involved in your case, hiring an attorney can actually save you money in the long run. This is because they’ll work to keep your charges as minimal as possible, and the lower your charges, the lower your fine. With drug charges in Kansas carrying fines anywhere from $2,500 to $100,000, you can imagine how keeping your charges minimal can keep more money in your pocket.
Moreover, your case won’t drag on as long with an attorney as it could if you represent yourself. The reason for this is that a lawyer keeps the process moving by filing documents on time and not delaying hearings unless it’s beneficial for your case. The more quickly your case can be resolved, the fewer fees you’ll pay and the less you’ll owe your attorney. If a speedy resolution is in your favor, your attorney can make it happen.
They Won’t Let You Say Anything That Will Get You Into Trouble
This is one reason why you should hire an attorney as soon as you are charged with a drug offense. You don’t have to say anything to the police, but if you do, it can be brought back up in your case in an attempt to convict you. An attorney will keep you from saying anything that could land you in more trouble or make your charges worse.
They will also prevent you from incriminating yourself on the stand in court if they believe staying quiet is in your best interests. You don’t have to testify in your own defense, and a skilled attorney can determine if you should provide testimony or if anything you say could only hurt your defense. You’ll always still have the option to testify if you want to, but an experienced lawyer will provide the best advice on the issue.
Having drug charges against you doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have to spend time in prison or pay a huge fine. By hiring an experienced drug charge lawyer, you can minimize your penalties or win your case outright. Contact Billam & Henderson, LLC today to discover how we can ensure you receive the lightest consequences possible in your drug case.