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Video – Attorney Spencer Freeman Explains Why The Prosecutor Will Offer A Deal At The Beginning Of Your Criminal Case. Should You Take It?

Video – Attorney Spencer Freeman Explains Why The Prosecutor Will Offer A Deal At The Beginning Of Your Criminal Case. Should You Take It?

Spencer Freeman – Criminal Defense Attorney – Pierce County, WA

“I will say, generally speaking, when I am handling a criminal case, at my first meeting with the prosecutor, I will be given an offer to settle.”

Ray Hrdlicka – Host – Attorneys.Media

“Wait a minute. Did I just hear you say that the very first meeting with the prosecutor?

Spencer Freeman – Criminal Defense Attorney – Pierce County, WA

“That’s my experience. I can’t say that’s true across the board.”

Ray Hrdlicka – Host – Attorneys.Media

“Wow. I apologize for interrupting. But I did not think that it would occur so early-on in the case. I thought that would only occur later on…”

Spencer Freeman – Criminal Defense Attorney – Pierce County, WA

“No. Generally here, at least here where I do most of my practice, and even in the other counties that I’m involved in throughout Washington, my experience is that the prosecutors will present you an offer, an initial offer, at the onset of the case. But I also tell that those offers are almost never something that you’re going to consider.”

Ray Hrdlicka – Host – Attorneys.Media

“Throwing mud up against the wall…he doesn’t expect you to take it?”

Spencer Freeman – Criminal Defense Attorney – Pierce County, WA

“Well, sometimes they do. When a lot of the time’s, the offer is ‘plead guilty as charged’. My response to that is I’m never going to consider that. Again, ‘never’, maybe I shouldn’t use that word. In 23 years, I’ve plead somebody ‘guilty as charged’ once. But if I go to a jury trial, even if I only have a five percent chance of losing at the jury trial, but my client is going to be found guilty after the jury trial, and the prosecutor wants my client to plead guilty to those exact crimes now, why wouldn’t I go to a jury trial to see whether we can get a ‘not guilty’? So, ‘guilty as charged’ doesn’t work for me, it’s not a negotiating tool.”

Ray Hrdlicka – Host – Attorneys.Media

“I’m confused, because if that’s what the prosecutor…consists with his first offer, it’s the same as if pleading guilty at the arraignment.”

Spencer Freeman – Criminal Defense Attorney – Pierce County, WA

“Correct.”

Ray Hrdlicka – Host – Attorneys.Media

“So why is it even made? Are they testing the water to see what kind of case you have?”

Spencer Freeman – Criminal Defense Attorney – Pierce County, WA

“They might be testing…maybe. Again, I think that’s going to be case specific. They may be testing the water to see what sort of criminal defense attorney is on the other side. They may also have this as their ultimate goal. Most prosecutors, as you bring them mitigation evidence or you bring them liability evidence, are willing to have a conversation and move from that standpoint. Prosecutors, for them, it is a negotiating tool. They’re not going to come out with the best offer they’re going to give you from the get-go.”

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