If you are facing criminal charges in Wichita, Kansas, you may be wondering how to find the best criminal defense lawyer to represent you.
However, worry not. This article provides useful information on how to locate the best criminal defense lawyer in Wichita, KS.
Additionally, the article expounds on the types of criminal charges and the importance of hiring a lawyer for your criminal case.
How to Find the Best Wichita (KS) Criminal Defense Lawyers
Locating a criminal defense lawyer in Wichita, Kansas is not a hard task.
Several law firms and attorneys are readily available to help you beat your criminal charge.
But how do you find the best Wichita KS criminal defense lawyer?
Generally, you can search for such an attorney at:
- Search Engine sites such as Google and Bing.
- Online directories such as AVVO, SuperLawyers, or FindLaw
- Physical Offices of Law firms based in Wichita, although this process will be time-consuming and hectic.
- Through referrals from friends and family.
- Social media sites like X, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Once you find ideal criminal defense lawyers, it is important to narrow down on certain specifics.
The section below will guide you on how to filter out and narrow down your selections
Criteria for selecting the best criminal defense lawyer in Wichita
- Expertise and Specialization
Criminal law is a complex and constantly changing field that requires specific knowledge and skills.
A lawyer who practices criminal law exclusively or primarily will have more experience and expertise in handling criminal cases than a general practitioner or a lawyer who dabbles in different areas of law.
Such a lawyer is also more conversant with court procedures with regard to criminal defense.
- Experience in local courts
Each court system has its own rules, procedures, and personalities.
A lawyer who is familiar with the local judges, prosecutors, and court staff will know how to navigate the system effectively and efficiently.
A local lawyer will also have a better understanding of the community and the jury pool that may decide your case.
Various online sites can help you gauge whether a lawyer has a good reputation.
For example, sites such as AVVO and SuperLawyers will help you find reviews and a lawyer’s biography. ratings, testimonials, and awards.
If you want a lawyer who is respected and trusted by their peers, clients, and the legal community. You can check a lawyer’s reputation by looking if they have been recognized through a Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings.
You can also ask for referrals from friends, family, or other professionals who have worked with or know of a good criminal defense lawyer.
- Initial Free Consultation
An initial free consultation is an opportunity for you to meet with a lawyer and discuss your case in detail.
This consultation will also provide you with a chance to ask the lawyer questions about their qualifications, experience, fees, strategy, and expectations.
You can also get a sense of their personality, communication style, and rapport.
A free consultation can help you decide if you feel comfortable and confident with a lawyer before hiring them.
To avoid future conflict regarding legal fees, it is important to discuss with your criminal defense lawyer how much they bill for their services. Some lawyers charge by the hour while others charge a flat fee.
In addition, you can enquire about what services are included in their fee and if to expect any additional costs or expenses that may arise during your case, such as court fees, expert witnesses, or investigators.
A good lawyer will explain their fee structure clearly and transparently and provide you with a written fee agreement.
You need a lawyer who will keep you informed and updated on your case progress and respond to your calls, emails, or messages promptly.
Additionally, you also need a lawyer who will be accessible and reachable when you need them, especially during emergencies or critical moments in your case.
A good lawyer will communicate with you regularly and effectively and make you feel valued and respected as a client.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need a lawyer for my criminal charge?
Hiring an attorney to represent your criminal case depends on several circumstances.
Most of the time the decision will depend on the severity of the criminal charge you are facing.
For example, in some criminal conduct classified as a misdemeanor, some people might ignore the services of criminal defense lawyers.
Such cases can involve class 3, level 3, or class C misdemeanors, with the label depending on the laws of the State. All in all, class 3, level 3, or class c misdemeanors are usually less serious crimes, often with no jail time required and minimal or nominal fines.
You can click this link to see your state’s equivalent of a ‘class C’ misdemeanor. Such crimes include disorderly conduct or traffic violations such as parking tickets.
However, serious crimes classified as felonies and misdemeanors require one to hire the services of a criminal defense lawyer.
Felonies are serious crimes that carry severe punishment and involve complex court procedures. On the other hand, a misdemeanor is a crime that carries severe punishment and an imprisonment term that is less than a year.
What are the advantages of hiring a criminal defense lawyer?
Depending on the complexity of one’s case and their financial position, it may be difficult to hire a lawyer.
In addition, you might also question the advantage of a criminal defense lawyer.
However, the truth is that you need a criminal defense lawyer to handle your case.
You need a lawyer who can protect your rights, challenge the evidence against you, and negotiate the best possible outcome for your situation.
Criminal cases can have serious consequences, such as jail time, fines, probation, and a criminal record.
Some of the advantages of hiring a criminal defense lawyer are:
- One is assured that their case will get the necessary expertise and knowledge since the lawyer understands the law better
- Lawyers are aware of procedural rules that apply to each specific cases
- One is assured of a likelihood of a positive outcome i.e., beating the charges hence avoiding permanent criminal records
- Lawyers may have a relationship with court personnel or the judges, hence it looks better for you and may increase your chances of obtaining a positive outcome
- Lawyers might hire the best expert witnesses who will help you prove your evidence or innocence
- Lawyers are well-versed in negotiating plea agreements
- Criminal lawyers can help you obtain a sentencing program that avoids jail time
What are the Categories of criminal offenses?
1. Crimes Against A person
These are crimes that cause physical or mental health on the victim.
Accordingly, these crimes are divided into two categories: homicide and violent crimes.
Homicides are classified as per the degree of physical harm. A crime is a homicide when it leads to the death of the victim. Examples of homicides include first-degree murder, voluntary manslaughter, or vehicular homicide.
Violent crimes do not cause the death of the victim. Rather they cause severe mental and physical harm.
Examples of violent crimes include assault and battery, arson, child abuse, domestic abuse, kidnapping, rape, and statutory rape.
2. Crimes against property
These are crimes that involve the deprivation of the use or enjoyment of property belonging to the victim.
Examples of these crimes include burglary, larceny, robbery, auto theft, and shoplifting.
3. Inchoate Crimes
These are crimes that are initiated by someone else but completed by another person. For example, acts of assisting in the commission of another crime.
In such crimes, an individual must take a practical step toward the completion of the crime.
Examples of inchoate crimes include aiding and abetting, attempting, and conspiracy.
4. Statutory Crimes
These are crimes that are illegal as per either state or federal laws.
Such crimes are further classified into alcohol-related crimes, drug crimes traffic offenses, and financial or white-collar crimes.
Examples of such crimes include drug possession, reckless driving, driving under the influence, etc.
5. Financial Crimes
These crimes usually involve deception or fraud for financial crimes.
Financial crimes are also transboundary crimes. Meaning that they can be committed outside the US boundary in another territory.
Examples of financial crimes include money laundering, tax evasion, cybercrime, and embezzlement.
What is the crime rate in Wichita, Kansas?
Wichita is a dangerous city and ranks as the 8th most dangerous city out of 320 major cities in the US with a population of over 100,000.
The violent crime rate in Wichita ranks 26th highest in the US while the property crime rates ranks 8th highest in the US.
Do courts in Kansas have a huge case backlog?
As of 2022, a massive backlog of cases was reported by news outlets. For example, in the Sedgwick County, one private attorney reported handling an excess of 150 life-sentence cases.
If you have read this article, then it will be easy to find the best criminal defense lawyer in Wichita.
A good criminal defense lawyer can make a huge difference in the outcome of your case and your future.
Statistics reveal that only 1 percent of accused people do not hire criminal lawyers.
The downfall of failing to hire a criminal defense lawyer is that one risks jail time and a possible criminal record.
It is important to hire a criminal defense lawyer as they will help you win a case.
By following the tips given in this article, you can narrow down your options and choose the best lawyer for your needs.
Remember to do your research, compare different lawyers, and trust your instincts.