3 Things To Know About Pleading Guilty

When you are arrested for a crime, you are legally presumed to be "not guilty." If you proceed to trial, the prosecution is tasked with the process of proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and you will only be found guilty if they succeed. As the defendant, you can choose to bypass the trial proceedings by pleading guilty. However, before you do so, it is important to get a realistic understanding of what a guilty plea may entail. Our criminal defense attorney at the Lake of the Ozarks is here to help.

A Few Things To Know About Pleading Guilty

1. Pleading Guilty May Result In A Lighter Sentence
Pleading guilty to a crime upfront (rather than waiting for the prosecution to prove guilt after a long and rigorous trial process) may result in a lighter sentence than would otherwise be rendered. However, this may not always be the case. Your attorney can help you get a realistic expectation of what the outcome for both situations may be so that you can make a more informed decision.

2. Pleading Guilty May Result in a Criminal Conviction On Your Record
Pleading guilty can have a similar outcome as a guilty verdict... a criminal conviction that remains on your record forever. There are long-term consequences a criminal conviction may have on your day-to-day life, such as making it more difficult to obtain professional licensing, preventing you from purchasing a firearm, and exercising your right to vote. 

3. Pleading Guilty May Require You To Forfeit Some Of Your Constitutional Rights
Our founding fathers promised the American people multiple rights that would ensure all citizens received fair and equitable treatment during the trial process. Pleading guilty results in the waiver of some of these constitutional rights. Here are a few general examples of some of the rights you may be giving up by submitting a guilty plead:
  • The right to testify in your own defense (and be heard)
  • The right to a trial by a jury of your peers
  • Th right to an appeal

Consult With Your Attorney Before Tendering A Guilty Plea
Pleading guilty is difficult to unwind. While it may be the best option in certain cases, we encourage you to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney in Camden County MO before tendering a guilty plea. Our attorney can help you examine all of the details surrounding your case and to identify the best course of action for your situation. Contact O'Donnell Law Center to schedule your consultation today.

We Carry Your Burden ~ You Carry On With Life.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is created by the publication of this blog.

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Phone: (573) 552-0317

O'Donnell Law Center, LLC
1026 Palisades Blvd. Suite 3
Osage Beach, MO  65065


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