Following a negotiated plea of guilt, a court hearing will be arranged so the judge can be informed. Regardless of whether the judge accepts or wants satisfactory changes, the judge will hear the plea of no contest or guilty and sentencing will proceed often at the next scheduled hearing. Read on to learn more.
Many judges will accept plea bargains if they consider the sentence to be fair but may also consider if the defendant is a repeat offender and if there is community outrage regarding the crime.
The Judge will ensure the defendant is aware of the rights they are conceding, and they comprehend the offense for which they are being punished. This includes admitting and understanding the charges, understanding what the plea fully involves and knowing that by pleading they forsake the right to counsel if they are represented, a right to a trial by jury, the right not to self-incriminate and not to cross examine.
Normally the judge has a comprehensive list of questions to ascertain if the plea is knowing and intelligent. Usually, defendants follow counsel from their attorney and answer in the affirmative to the questions, so as not to harm the plea-bargaining process.
Not Knowing And Intelligent Pleas
When a defendant enters a plea and does not appear or lacks counsel when reviewed having made a knowing and intelligent plea, there may be grounds for the striking of the conviction from the record of the defendant. This may be vital as offenders tend to be sentenced more harshly with each offense.
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*This information is not intended to be legal advice. Please contact Canterbury Law Group today to learn more about your personal legal needs.