If you or a friend has been recently charged with an injustice, you may be faced with the question: ‘What are my defense options?’. In some cases, there are valid reasons for criminal defense. While there are many defenses, it’s vital to seek advice from an attorney in Rochester, NY to ensure you fall under the right legal bracket.

Criminal Defense 101

Criminal defenses involve validated arguments that challenge the evidence of prosecutions. The state (the prosecution) will try to prove you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. They must breakdown the crime in its entirety to show that you have committed the crime. This can be an emotional and mental burden for the guilty party.

Defense - Others or Self

Murder, battery, and assault are legal reasons for defense of self and/or others. In some cases, a violent act may prompt an immediate violent response to defend one's own or another’s life. For example, if you witness a person trying to harm another person, under the right category of reasonings, you are allowed to defend that other person to a point in which the person inflicting the harm is forced to surrender, but not beyond that point. Once you go beyond the point of defending the innocent person (continuing to harm the person whose surrendered from harming the innocent party), you have crossed into the category of assault and battery. The same rule is applied to self defense. Once the person has relinquished control, you should refrain from continuing bodily harm to that person.

Mistake of Law

In some cases, the defendant being accused may not even realize they've committed a crime. For example, if the defendant was gifted with something, unaware that this ‘gift’ is another person's property - and they were charged with the crime, they could plead not guilty with proof. This happens with individuals who’ve been victims of identity fraud. The criminal will use the defendant's identity to steal or embezzle money. In this case, advice from a free legal aid attorney in Rochester, NY can help you gain your good standing reputation once again.

Defense - Protection of Property  

Same rules as defense with self or others. If you feel the person is posing harm to your property, you may use an act of defense to a point where the party has stopped. If you are unsure of these limitations and defenses, contact your local attorney to ask a legal question and get the results you need.