Do You Have a Defense to Your Criminal Case?

We've listed some of the more common ones here that will apply in some criminal cases when it comes to criminal law. Not all of these defenses will use every time, obviously, and many of these defenses don't come up a lot — believe it or not — when it comes to criminal defense.

Sometimes the defenses are as simple as “no, I didn't do that.”  It doesn't necessarily have to be self-defense, alibi, entrapment, or any of the other defenses we've listed here. We, of course, have utilized these defenses, having practiced criminal defense in the Los Angeles County and San Fernando Valley now for twenty-five years. Still, again, it has to be a situation where the reason is applicable based on the circumstances of the case.

Again, a lot of times what we see happening in criminal cases is the police are being given a particular set of facts either by an alleged victim or a specific witness or witnesses and then based on that, they arrest the person, charge them with a crime by using the prosecutors to review everything and make a filing decision. But if the police are not given all of the information or not given accurate information, they're filing cases incorrectly.  Once the facts come to light, that becomes a defense in a case.

So, that's not necessarily one of the defenses listed here in the overview or on this website because the defense is, I didn't do anything wrong because the reason is.  I may not have been defending myself, but the facts and how this alleged victim claims that things happened are simply not actual.  Then you can bring your witnesses to bear to testify to the facts and defend the case.

Reviewing All The Specific Details With Our Attorneys

If you're looking for a specific defense and you think particular protection might apply to your case, I've got some videos here that are specific regarding all of the reasons that we have listed here. I've also got some case law and real-life circumstances surrounding some of these defenses.  And of course, the best way to flush out a guard in a criminal case is to go and sit down with our attorneys, go over all of the facts and details of your claim, and then let the attorney see whether or not any of the specific defenses that you might think apply, actually do apply to your case.

Sometimes in actual practice, once you try to utilize a defense, it's not appropriate because you don't have all of the facts and details necessary to meet that defense.  In other words, a lot of these mentioned defenses all have elements to them that you have to be able to prove so, if you can't prove the elements, for example, of entrapment where you've got to show that the police entrapped you into committing a crime that you were never going to commit. Still, for their actions, you also can't be predisposed.

In other words, if they can show this person was going to commit the crime no matter what, the police just helped facilitate it.  We see this all the time when we look at prostitution activities where someone ends up speaking with an undercover police officer posing as a prostitute. They end up getting arrested by the whole team of police officers who are waiting to capture people who are coming right to a specific area where there's prostitution activity and have money in their pocket and don't have any other reason for being there but for the prostitution activity.

So, the prosecutors will be able to block this entrapment defense because they're going to be able to say, this guy is predisposed.  Why is he here?  This is right where all the neighbors are complaining of prostitution activities.

That's why we're set up right here.  He's meeting with somebody who looks and talks like a prostitute.  He's got the cash.  Sometimes, the defenses are simply not applicable in a particular case.  That's why you have to flush things out with your attorney. Sometimes pretrial motions and plea bargaining can be very effective weapons in a criminal case.

Using The Right Defense Under The Circumstances

Alibi is another defense you must be careful of when using because if you use it at the wrong time under bad circumstances, it can undermine your entire case. I've seen other less-seasoned attorneys try to use the alibi defense in an issue, and then when their client is on the stand trying to meet the elements of the alibi defense, they end up saying something that makes it clear that they're not telling the truth.

Not only does that ruin the alibi defense for them many times, but it also ruins their case, and the jury says, if the person is lying about that, they're probably guilty of the crime. So, you have to be careful about using some of these defenses in criminal cases because if they're not applicable and can't meet the elements of a reason, you end up doing a lot of damage to your case. 

You're probably going to end up getting convicted. If you get convicted, you're going to end up serving jail or prison time or getting some ramifications that you might have been able to avoid had you just worked something out through your attorney and not tried to assert a defense that wasn't appropriate to your case. Every case is unique, and our experienced criminal defense lawyers will need to review the details closely. However, the most common defenses include the following:

This is why we sit down, review everything, and discuss the specific defense that might apply to your case. Then we put the wheels in motion to prove that protection through investigation and hard work, or we can also sometimes rule out reasons that you might think to apply to your case by looking at everything and making an informed decision about what we're going to do regarding your defense. We specialize in the Van Nuys Courthouse and the San Fernando Courthouse.

Strategies for Defending Criminal Cases in Los Angeles

I've been defending criminal cases in Los Angeles now for 30 years. First, I started working for the District Attorney's office to understand how they handle cases.  Then I worked for a Superior Court judge in LA county to get a feel for how judges view cases and their thought processes regarding resolving them.

I also worked for the State Bar of California on a commission that investigated potential judges for the Governor of the state of California to rate them so the Governor could appoint them to the bench.  So, I've got much well-rounded experience and have a pretty good idea of how criminal cases are handled in Los Angeles.

First, you must realize that the District Attorney's office, which prosecutes most of the criminal cases in LA, is like a corporation.  They've got over a thousand employees. There's a hierarchy in that corporation, and you've got to know how to guide your client's case in that area as a criminal defense attorney. 

There used to be approximately 40 courts in LA county, but because of budget issues, they've crunched it down to around 25.  So, knowing the judges and prosecutors and how to navigate a criminal case through the criminal justice system properly is crucial for your attorney if you want to end up with the best possible result.

The bottom line is that we have you come in.  We sit down and go over your case.  I encourage you to be honest and give me all of the details because that's one of the boxes I'm going to need to check to decide, number one, whether or not you can fight the case, and number two, whether or not this is the type of case that needs to be mitigated or needs to be investigated. 

Many things can be done to help you, but the bottom line is that you don't do the same thing in every case.  We have to look at your case, facts, circumstances, life, future, and what you supposedly did, and then we can decide how to defend you properly.

Sometimes defense means fighting the case through a jury trial; other times, defense means negotiating the case and getting the best possible deal.

So, you've come to the right place if you're looking for a criminal defense attorney.  I encourage you to at least set a meeting with me.  We can talk about your case.

No matter what, you will feel better about your situation once you talk to somebody like me who has experience – who's traveled the road you're about to travel and had success.

So, pick up the phone now.  I've got somebody waiting to talk to you who understands criminal defense that's been doing it for years; that person will then relay the case to me.  We're going to sit down.  We're going to go over everything, and we're going to get you the best possible result.