Criminal Defense Attorney Servicing Stafford County, Virginia

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Criminal Defense Attorney Servicing Stafford County, Virginia

Facing criminal charges can be a stressful and isolating situation. Thankfully, if you’ve been arrested and charged with a crime in Stafford County, you don’t have to face the criminal justice system alone. When you hire a criminal defense attorney, you get the support and advocacy you need to assert your innocence or pursue a favorable resolution to your charges. This can help you avoid the most severe consequences resulting from an arrest or conviction. Contact Buczek Carpenter PC as soon as possible for an initial case evaluation to discuss how our defense lawyers can help you protect your freedom, reputation, and future.

Types of Criminal Law Matters Our Defense Lawyers Can Help You Face

At Buczek Carpenter PC, an experienced criminal lawyer can help you pursue the most favorable outcome possible following a range of criminal charges, including those involving:

  • Traffic offenses, such as moving violations or reckless driving
  • DUI and DWI, including felony DUI charges
  • Disorderly conduct
  • Assault and battery
  • Domestic violence
  • Drug crimes, including misdemeanor possession and felony drug trafficking
  • Juvenile crimes, including delinquency proceedings or adult criminal prosecution of juveniles
  • White-collar crimes, such as embezzlement, identity theft, and cybercrimes

Contact us after an arrest in Stafford County to discuss how we can help you resolve your criminal charges.

Penalties for Convictions Under Virginia Criminal Statutes

Virginia criminal law imposes penalties for criminal convictions, with penalties increasing with the severity of the offense. Sentencing ranges for felony convictions include:

  • Class 1 Felonies– Life imprisonment and a fine of up to $100,000; defendants who committed offenses at age 18 or older may not receive parole, good conduct allowance, earned sentence credits, or conditional release
  • Class 2 Felonies– Life imprisonment or a term of not less than 20 years, plus a fine of up to $100,000
  • Class 3 Felonies– Five to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000
  • Class 4 Felonies– Two to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000
  • Class 5 Felonies– One to 10 years in prison or, in the jury’s or court’s discretion, up to 12 months in jail, plus a fine of up to $2,500
  • Class 6 Felonies– One to five years in prison or, in the jury’s or court’s discretion, up to 12 months in jail, plus a fine of up to $2,500

Misdemeanor penalties in Virginia include:

  • Class 1 Misdemeanors– Up to 12 months in jail and a potential fine of up to $2,500
  • Class 2 Misdemeanors– Up to six months in jail and a potential fine of up to $1,000
  • Class 3 Misdemeanors– A fine of up to $500
  • Class 4 Misdemeanors– A fine of up to $250

Criminal convictions can have other long-term consequences beyond incarceration or fines. For example, a conviction for sex crimes may obligate a defendant to register as a sex offender. A record of criminal convictions can also make obtaining housing, employment, educational opportunities, or financial services challenging when those records come up in background checks.

Common Defenses to Criminal Charges

Depending on the types of criminal charges you face and the circumstances surrounding your arrest, you may have various defenses you can raise to fight your charges and pursue a dismissal or acquittal in your case. Common examples of defense strategies used in criminal cases include:

  • Alibi– An alibi defense requires a defendant to prove that they were somewhere other than the scene of the crime at the time the crime took place. Alibi defenses may rely on witness testimony, surveillance footage, GPS or cell phone data, or purchase receipts to establish a defendant’s location during the crime.
  • Defense of Self, Others, or Property– A defendant facing assault and battery charges may claim that they acted in self-defense or to defend their property or other persons. A valid self-defense claim requires a defendant to prove they reasonably feared the alleged victim would cause injury or property damage. A defendant must use force necessary to protect from the alleged victim’s violent acts and proportional to the force used by the victim. However, a defendant may not use lethal force to defend their property.
  • Consent– Defendants may raise a consent defense in criminal cases involving sex crimes, assault and battery, or property crimes. A consent defense requires showing that the alleged victim consented to or authorized the defendant’s action. For example, in a case involving sex crimes, a consent defense will argue that the victim validly consented to the underlying sex act.
  • Intoxication– An intoxication defense requires a defendant to prove that their intoxication from drugs or alcohol rendered them unable to understand the nature of their actions, which may prevent the prosecution from proving the intent element of a criminal offense. However, a defendant cannot raise a voluntary intoxication defense – where the defendant willingly consumed drugs or alcohol – against many types of criminal charges.
  • Mistake of Fact– A mistake-of-fact defense alleges that a defendant reasonably believed a mistaken fact, which may cancel out an element of a charged criminal defense. For example, a person charged with theft may argue that they reasonably believed that the property owner intended to give them the property or that they had a legal right to take it.
  • Duress or Coercion– A duress or coercion defense alleges that someone else threatened the defendant or another person to force the defendant to commit the crime.
  • Constitutional Violations– A defense strategy may rely on motions to exclude prosecution evidence because law enforcement or prosecutors obtained the evidence by violating the defendant’s constitutional rights, such as by conducting an illegal search or inducing an involuntary confession from the defendant.

Finally, many defense strategies rely on assertions of innocence. Because the prosecution must prove every element of a criminal charge beyond a reasonable doubt, a defendant does not have to prove anything at trial. However, a defendant can present testimony and evidence supporting their claim of innocence.

How Can Our Criminal Defense Services Help You?

Prosecutors have significant resources to build criminal cases and obtain convictions. You need a criminal law attorney who will stand up for your rights and interests and level the playing field for you to assert your innocence or obtain a favorable resolution to your criminal charges. When you turn to the defense lawyers at Buczek Carpenter PC for help facing criminal charges, you can expect our team to:

  • Independently investigate your charges to obtain evidence that can help us prepare an effective legal defense
  • Help you understand your charges, the potential outcomes and penalties in your case, and what to expect at each stage of your case
  • Evaluate potential defense strategies and advise you on the strength of your case
  • Pursue a favorable resolution to your case by moving to exclude evidence and reduce or dismiss charges
  • Limit the consequences of an arrest and conviction by pursuing the best possible outcome, whether through a plea deal, if appropriate, or by presenting a compelling defense at trial to force the prosecution to prove its case

Contact Buczek Carpenter PC to Discuss Your Legal Options with a Knowledgeable Criminal Lawyer

After an arrest in Stafford County, Virginia, get the legal help you need to protect your rights. Contact Buczek Carpenter PC today for a free, confidential consultation to discuss how our criminal defense services can help you pursue a favorable resolution to your case.