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Public Defenders v Pvt. Lawyers

Why Choose a Private Attorney Over the Public Pretender? – Dan Smith and Jon Pettis

Choosing the right DUI lawyer for you is a very important decision.  If you hire an attorney, you can pick who you want based on their experience, knowledge and reputation.  If you have a public defender, you get whoever is assigned to your case, and even that may change over the course of your case.

Public defenders have gotten an unfair rap as being poor lawyers, sometimes even referred to as public pretenders usually by low brow private attorneys who take people’s money and do almost nothing for them.  Most public defenders are very good lawyers and are dedicated.  But there are some unfortunate realities to their job.  The most serious is how much pressure is on them to close cases quickly with pleas.  Again, most of the time, they give good advice, but sometimes there are problems.

One example was a recent client of our firm.  Initially, he was being advised by a public defender.  At his first court date, the public defender told him his best choice was to plead guilty that day and not to fight.  The client thought something more must be possible.  Upon coming to our office, our lawyers almost immediately recognized a potential problem with his case.  Ultimately, we brought a motion to dismiss the case for a violation of his right to a speedy trial.  After reviewing our motion, the prosecutor dismissed the case completely.

This does not mean hiring the right private lawyer guarantees better results.  But, here’s an example where the public defender was trying to get our client to sign a form saying he was guilty and we got a court docket saying the case was dismissed.

Click on the images below:

Plea Guilty    Misdemeanor

Plea Guilty                                        Case Dismissed

 

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