While the entertainment industry tends to show the drama of criminal law jury trials, this isn’t the way things usually happen in the real world. Most criminal cases are resolved when the prosecution and defense come to an agreement about what is going to happen. This is known as a plea deal.
Some people question the motive behind these deals. They don’t understand why a defendant would willfully enter into one. They also worry that some innocent people will enter into a plea deal just to take away the uncertainty of a jury trial. It is important to note that no defendant should ever entertain the idea of a plea deal unless they do admit that they committed the crime.
Plea deals benefit both sides of the case, which is why they are used so often. Since the resolution of the case is much faster, the defendant can put the criminal justice process behind them and the prosecution can move its focus to another case. It will also free up time on the docket, which means that other cases might move through the court much faster. This can save the defendant money and might help them to move on with life.
While some courts won’t allow plea bargains, many realize that they are important to the system. If you are considering a plea deal, make sure that you think about each point that is being addressed by the deal. Also, remember that you have to uphold your end of the bargain and won’t be able to appeal the sentence handed down as a result of the deal.