Dunwoody Criminal Defense Lawyer
If you’ve been arrested, whether for a misdemeanor or felony, it’s essential that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney right away. Getting convicted of a crime can mean fines and jail time and other penalties, along with the burden of a criminal record, which can keep you from getting or holding the job you want or even getting housing or credit on favorable terms. A Dunwoody criminal defense lawyer can help you avoid the worst consequences of an arrest and possibly avoid any negative impact at all.
At Hawkins Spizman, our Dunwoody criminal defense attorneys are highly skilled and experienced in defending people charged with misdemeanor and felony offenses in Dunwoody, Georgia, and surrounding areas in DeKalb County. Our job is to protect your record, your career, and your reputation, and we fight hard to achieve the best outcome in every case. Call our office right away after an arrest or for help with any criminal matter in Dunwoody, including:
- Bond Hearings
- Domestic Violence
- Failure to Appear
- Gun Crimes
- Private Warrant Applications
- Probation Revocation
- Property Damage
- Sex Crimes
- Student Defense
- Traffic Ticket Defense
How Does Hawkins Spizman Defend the Accused Against Georgia Felonies and Misdemeanors?
The Georgia Code outlines several different ways persons accused of committing a crime can defend themselves against prosecution. These are “affirmative defenses,” meaning it is the job of the defendants’ attorneys to prove the defense, but if they are successful, then the defendant will not be found guilty or culpable for the alleged offense.
Some defenses claim that the defendant should not be held responsible for his or her actions based on certain factors. In Georgia, these defenses to prosecution include:
- The defendant was less than 13 years old
- The defendant did not have the mental capacity to distinguish right from wrong
- The defendant was operating under a delusional compulsion
- The defendant was involuntarily intoxicated due to factors such as excusable ignorance, coercion, or fraud
- The defendant was induced by a mistake of fact that would have justified the act had the defendant not been mistaken
- The defendant is charged with a sex crime but was under 18 and trafficked or was over 18 but was tricked or coerced and trafficked
Other defenses are based on the premise that the defendant’s actions were justified or excusable. Some of these defenses include the following:
Self-defense – Crimes of violence such as assault or even homicide, may be excused or justified when the defendant was acting in self-defense or defense of others.
Defense of property – People can be excused for using force, threats or violence to defend their home or habitation or other real or personal property. In defense of the home, one must have a reasonable belief that force is necessary to prevent or stop an intrusion or attack. One may be justified in using deadly force to repel a violent entry with a reasonable belief the person might commit an assault or violent act, or to prevent a forcible felony. There is no duty to retreat before using force in self-defense. Georgians are authorized by law to “stand their ground.”
Entrapment – A person who commits a criminal act might be excused if they were induced or solicited to commit the act by a law enforcement officer but would not have committed the act were it not for the officer’s conduct. The idea and intention must have originated with law enforcement, who then used undue persuasion, incitement or deceitful means.
Coercion – A person is not guilty of a crime if they were forced to do it by another person, meaning they reasonably believed that committing the act was the only way to prevent their imminent death or great bodily injury. This defense would not apply to a charge of murder.
In addition to the above, a savvy criminal defense lawyer will look at the facts and evidence and present all viable defenses. Common defenses include:
Alibi – You could not have been at the scene of the crime because you were somewhere else at the time.
Misidentification – An eyewitness is mistaken about an identification.
Drug possession – You were in the presence of drugs, but they did not belong to you, you didn’t know they were there, or you didn’t know the substance was illegal.
Consent – You are charged with a sex crime (sexual assault, rape) following a consensual sex act.
Intent – You are charged with theft of property that you never intended to steal. Most crimes have an intent element that the prosecutor must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. Raising a lack of intent is a common defense to many different criminal prosecutions.
Make Your First Call After an Arrest in Dunwoody Be to Hawkins Spizman Trial Lawyers
Your life isn’t over just because you’ve been arrested. Your criminal defense lawyer might be able to get the charges dropped, dismissed or reduced, negotiate a favorable outcome that avoids jail or a harsh criminal record, or defend you in court for an acquittal or verdict of not guilty. Your first move should be to call an experienced Dunwoody criminal defense attorney before you do anything else. In Dunwoody, Georgia, call Hawkins Spizman at 770-685-6400 for a free case review. We’ll let you know where you stand and how we can help. Experience matters. Call Hawkins Spizman today.