How can mitigation help you in a criminal case?

When facing a criminal charge, you may want the court to hear your story from you, not from the prosecutor or by reading the police report. Mitigation is a humanizing approach that most people employ before a judge determines a sentence

Below are circumstances that can help lessen your sentence through mitigation:

You lack a prior criminal record 

If you don’t have a criminal record, mitigation can help you. Inform the court how you have been a law-abiding citizen and only made a mistake. Without a record, a judge may not view the crime as a pattern. That may induce them to give you a second chance.

You played a minor role

The court may be harsh to defendants who played a major role in a crime. Thus, if you can state and prove that you had a minor role in the offense, you may not face similar penalties as those with a leadership role.

You were in difficult circumstances

If you were struggling with a situation, such as an addiction or any other issue that may have pushed you to commit the offense, tell the court about it. You may be able to get into a recovery program for whatever issue you have, which can improve your life and keep you out of trouble.

Nobody suffered serious harm

Judges can be harsh on defendants who cause someone else major physical injuries or financial losses. If the victim(s) in your case didn’t suffer major losses, that could be another mitigating factor. 

Mitigation “connects the dots” – it helps people understand the causes and effects that lead to a criminal charge. It will help to get legal guidance to know the best way to tell your story.  

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