When you are accused of committing a crime, you are under a great amount of stress. Your life is at stake. A criminal conviction can have a dramatic impact on your life. You may lose your reputation, your job and, more importantly, your liberty.
If you are convicted of a crime, you face fines, community service, probation, or incarceration. A good criminal defense lawyer can present the best available defense for your case. For example, you may have committed the offense in circumstances justifying your behavior. In other cases, the evidence against you could have been obtained unlawfully, and an experienced criminal defense lawyer can file a motion to suppress evidence with the court.
You can be convicted of a crime only if the prosecution can prove that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This means that if your criminal defense lawyer can raise one reasonable doubt, the jury will have to acquit you of the charges.
Finally, if you were convicted, you may be able to vacate the conviction if you were not competently represented at trial. Under the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, a defendant has the right to be represented by a competent criminal defense attorney.