Stigmas Against Criminal Defence Lawyers
Movies and television have created a picture of the modern-day criminal defence lawyer. What do they look like?
Slicked-black-haired, grey-suited sneaky people on mobsters and criminals' payrolls and help get their clients off charges while being paid handsomely.
That's not the most positive image of a profession. It's also a major problem as it creates a stigma that is associated with criminal defence lawyers.
Below, we look at four wrong stigmas about criminal defence lawyers and how they impact their work and legacy.
They Only Care About Money
Since lawyers are known for charging a lot for their services, and there they are in court, defending a person suspected of a crime, it goes without saying that the perception is that they're money-hungry. Money is their driving factor, and the only thing they care about.
That's the furthest thing from the truth.
Every client is entitled to a fair trial, and legal fees are just part of the process. Some lawyers just charge more than others. Many criminal defence lawyers even work pro-bono or don't charge unless they win the case. Some are members of the public defender's courts and only help people who have no money available to them.
So the stigma about lawyers being greedy about money? Not true.
They Use 'Tricks' To Set Their Clients Free
Convincing a jury that one person is guilty of a crime is no easy feat. It's a challenge, and in many cases, this is where this stigma comes from.
Evidence shows the defendant is guilty, so the criminal lawyer "tricks" and uses sneaky moves to con the jury into believing that their client might be innocent. If the evidence is there, how else can the lawyer convince the jury?
It's just part of their job, is the answer.
It doesn't mean they used sneaky tricks or cons to set their clients free. They are doing their best to prove that the evidence was incorrect and provide their client with a fair chance to defend themselves in court. In many cases, the prosecution is wrong by providing unfairly collected evidence.
'Guilty By Association'
Just because criminal lawyers are supporting criminals, it doesn't mean they are criminals themselves, far from it.
It's just part of the job that they happen to work with individuals going through a turbulent time in their life or have committed a crime that they have regretted. It does not make them a criminal in the process.
This stigma is an incredibly wrong allegation to make and damages the reputation of the lawyer. They are just merely defending the individual's rights, which is part of the overall court process.
Many criminal lawyers are thoughtful, supportive and caring people, just like Dunlap Law, who are merely supporting their clients within the law's boundaries.
Winning Is All That Matters
Facts: every lawyer wants to win and get the best outcome for their client. That includes both criminal defence lawyers and prosecutors. It also means that justice isn't pushed to the backseat; it's just a blurred line.
Justice for the prosecution could mean that the defendant is jailed. Justice for the defence lawyer can be that the client is cleared of their charges because they were wrongly accused.
The line is blurred and confusing. It doesn't mean the criminal lawyer is out to win at all costs and neglecting justice. It has nothing to do with a desire to win, but a desire to be fair.