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Door County, Wisconsin Criminal Defense Lawyer

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Being arrested or questioned about involvement in a crime is a stressful situation. There are also many mistakes that suspects make that come to haunt them. If you are a suspect in a crime, then you need an aggressive Door County criminal defense attorney in your corner to represent you.

Fortunately, being charged with a crime is not the same as actually being convicted of one. A solid criminal defense attorney can throw wrenches in the state’s case against you, impeding their ability to get a conviction and lock you up. Even if you cannot beat the charges, you might still obtain a favorable resolution to your case, one that allows you to move on with your life.

Contact Hammett, Bellin & Oswald, LLC, today. The sooner we can get started on your case, the more we will be able to help you.

Misdemeanors versus Felonies: What’s the Difference?

Wisconsin divides crimes into misdemeanors and felonies. Generally, felonies carry much stiffer punishments, such as longer time in prison, lengthy probation, and increased fines. Felons can also lose their civil rights, such as their ability to vote or to serve on a jury.

Felons also lose the ability to legally carry a firearm. Under Wisconsin Statute § 941.29, it is a felony for a convicted felon to possess a firearm. This is a serious loss, particularly for people who engage in hunting for recreational purposes. For these reasons, fighting a felony charge is vital.

However, one misconception we hear often is that misdemeanor offenses aren’t really serious. Nothing could be further from the truth. If convicted of a misdemeanor, you could also pay a fine and even spend time in jail. A misdemeanor conviction can also follow you around the rest of your life, making it harder to obtain employment or rent an apartment.

Regardless of the charges you face, you should meet with a criminal defense attorney to review your options. Prosecutors frequently overcharge, so you need a lawyer to consider whether you are really guilty of the offense.

Have You Been Accused of a Crime?

Our firm has deep experience handling violent and non-violent crimes, including white collar and juvenile crimes. For example, we are prepared to defend you against the following charges:

  • Domestic violence
  • Disorderly conduct
  • Drug possession
  • Drug trafficking
  • OWI and related charges
  • Sexual assault
  • Solicitation or prostitution
  • Possession of child pornography
  • Fraud
  • Bribery
  • Identify theft
  • Counterfeiting
  • Money laundering
  • Embezzlement
  • Parole or probation violations

Each case has its own unique facts, and only an attorney can carefully review the record to determine what defenses are available.

Why Can’t You Use the Public Defender?

Wisconsin has many committed public defenders who are excellent lawyers. Unfortunately, most of them are very overworked. The state has not increased funding for public defenders, so they continue to stagger underneath heavier caseloads. When a public defender has too many cases, she might not be able to focus as much as she wants on your case.

By hiring your own attorney, you can ensure the best defense possible. At our firm, we take the time to:

  • Carefully review all evidence
  • Find evidence that helps exonerate our client or that casts doubt on the state’s evidence
  • Look for mistakes and constitutional violations made by the police and move to have this evidence tossed from court
  • Help our clients decide whether they want to testify on their behalf
  • Keep out inflammatory information from the jury

This work takes time, and few public defenders have the ability to focus 100% on your case. And the differences can be enormous. For example, if you ‘ve been charged with drug trafficking, we might be able to get the drugs suppressed if the police did not have a warrant or sufficient probable cause to search you. If successful, we can argue the prosecutor should drop the charges since there is now no longer any evidence the prosecutor can use to show a crime was committed.

What Should You Do after Being Arrested?

Here’s where many criminal defendants hamstring their own cases. They talk too much, say things they shouldn’t, and never reach out to an attorney.

As experienced Door County criminal defense lawyers, we recommend that you do the following:

  • Don’t talk to the police, no matter what they say. Remember, the police can lie to you and make promises that they can’t keep. Any police officer who says, “Cooperate with us and you won’t be charged” is not being honest because it is not up to the police to decide who gets charged.
  • Ask for a lawyer. You have the right to an attorney and should ask to speak with one. Of course, you might not know any lawyers, but you can contact friends or family who can find an attorney. Don’t speak to the police unless your attorney is present.
  • Don’t talk to friends about the event in question. It isn’t something to brag about and your friends or family might twist your words.
  • Don’t post about the incident on social media. Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know.

You should also hire the best criminal defense attorney you can find. Some attorneys have fancy advertisements in the phone book or on TV. Instead, look for attorneys who know what they are talking about and will level with you. The fact is that you can’t win every case, but you often can get a favorable outcome—a decent plea deal or charges reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor. Ask an attorney to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of your case and go with someone who seems honest.

Speak with a Criminal Defense Attorney in Door County, WI Today

With decades of combined experience, the lawyers at Hammett, Bellin & Oswald, LLC, can provide the type of aggressive defense you need. Please contact us today. You can schedule an initial consultation where we can go over your case and answer any questions you have.

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Neenah Office 675 Deerwood Avenue Neenah, WI 54956 (920) 720-0000

Appleton Office 4650 W. Spencer Street Appleton, WI 54914 (920) 720-6389