Charlotte Criminal Defense Lawyers
Serious criminal charges in Charlotte NC deserve an experienced, compassionate criminal defense attorney who will stand shoulder-to-shoulder with you in court and look out for your best interests.
Getting arrested may be one of the most traumatic experiences in your life. It doesn't matter if it involves allegations of domestic violence or DWI charges or a felony drug crime, if you've been accused of breaking the law, you should immediately seek the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney about your legal rights and options.
"I am convinced it takes YEARS to become an effective criminal defense lawyer. It's more than just book learning. One must be empathetic, but not gullible. I have grey hair for a reason. I've earned my stripes in court, handling serious criminal charges. I've sat, hand-in-hand with clients, waiting for a jury verdict on a murder charge. I've endured the pressure associated with life-changing prison terms. In my mind, there is no substitute for experience, hard work, and dedication to the craft as criminal lawyers."
- Bill Powers
You may not know where to start. Finding the right Charlotte criminal defense lawyer may seem a difficult task. If you're inexperienced with the criminal justice system, even the most minor criminal offense may seem overwhelming.
That's entirely normal.
It's OK to be concerned about your future, not knowing if a conviction is certain, or whether prison is a real possibility.
It's OK not to understand the legal issues involved or who you can trust with confidential or sensitive information.
Criminal defense attorneys explain things. We explain the system and how things work in court.
We help people by reviewing the facts of the case (the allegations), carefully analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of the State's case, and providing trustworthy legal advice about what to do next.
When Should I Hire a Lawyer?
"After a thorough investigation into your charges, we will provide an honest assessment of your options and whether it is in your best interests to plead not guilty or to begin possible plea negotiations.. Each case and each fact pattern is different and deserves full, careful consideration."
- Bill Powers, Criminal Defense Attorney
Whether the allegations involve a serious crime, like a felony, or your legal issue involves misdemeanor charges or probation violations, we think it's imperative to get an attorney involved as soon as possible.
If at all possible, we really like to talk to potential clients to begin representation before charges have been brought or the client is arrested.
That is as true for a felony offense like Felony Larceny by Employee or Embezzlement, as it is for allegations of Domestic Violence, Assaults, property crimes, or drug possession charges in District Court in Mecklenburg County.Should I Talk to the Police?
If the police call, asking for a statement or to "tell your side of the story," we recommend you politely decline to cooperate with the investigation and thereafter immediately call a lawyer.
How Do I Find an "Attorney Near Me?"
"Exercise your right to remain silent and lawyer up. You never have to apologize for or explain something you didn't say. Don't try to outsmart the police. Get a lawyer on your side."
- Bill Powers, Charlotte Criminal Defense Lawyer
It's pretty common for people to Google terms like "Criminal Lawyers near me" or "Who is the best criminal defense lawyer in Charlotte?" While that may be where some people begin their search for a lawyer, we think it's more important to consider a series of factors like the attorney's background experience, area of specialization, and professional accolades and awards.
While a Google or "Hey Siri" search may begin to point you in the right direction, we think hiring the first lawyer Google pulls up may not necessarily be the best way to go about hiring a criminal attorney.
We think choosing a criminal defense lawyer deserves the same amount of time and attention you would give in selecting a surgeon for a serious operation.
How to Find the Right Criminal Defense Attorneys for Your Case - North Carolina Advocates
"It's your future. Research lawyers and talk to them. Are they someone you feel like you can trust with your future?."
- Bill Powers
In reviewing for your representation or to be a loved one's legal counsel, our law office recommends that you consider these thirteen (13) questions:
- How long has the defense attorney in Charlotte been practicing law in North Carolina?
- What legal experience and courtroom trial experience does the NC criminal attorney have?
- Is the lawyer a Board Certified Specialist? Have they been recognized by the National Board of Trial Advocacy / National Board of Legal Specialty Certification?
- When was the last time legal services for the Charlotte criminal justice attorney included arguing Superior Court pretrial motions (to protect and preserve critical legal issues) before going forward with a jury trial?
- What is their level of experience handling violent crimes in North Carolina? Are they thought of in the profession as a skilled criminal defense attorney?
- What professional awards, certifications or legal industry recognitions has the attorney received for criminal defense or for their legal skills in other law practice fields?
- Has the attorney been an invited speaker at continuing legal education programs attended by other North Carolina lawyers?
- What Professional Leadership roles has the criminal attorney held in the legal community in North Carolina?
- Do they charge reasonable fees or offer payment plans when appropriate?
- Are the criminal defense attorneys who I am considering lawyers in Charlotte who have successfully handled hundreds of prior felony and misdemeanor cases?
- What does it cost to retain a Charlotte criminal defense lawyer?
- Do the criminal defense attorneys only handle matters in Charlotte NC, or also in adjacent counties like in Monroe or Gastonia, or Mooresville?
- Has the lawyer handled serious cases like murder in Mecklenburg County and manslaughter charges elsewhere in North Carolina?
At Powers Law Firm PA our Charlotte criminal defense attorneys have represented clients both in Charlotte and throughout North Carolina. Senior criminal law attorney Bill Powers adds:
"I have practiced law, tried cases, and represented clients in many counties in the Tar Heel State. I literally have argued matters from Murphy to the Outer Banks (OBX) of North Carolina. My law license isn't limited to Mecklenburg County only. If you have a serious felony charge or have been accused of DWI, I'm here and can travel to help."
The decision whether to take a case to trial, seek deferred prosecution (if possible), or negotiate a plea has a lot to do with the strength of the case against you.
Courtroom experience, having both won and lost cases at trial, is an integral part of how we formulate our legal advice. Experienced litigators know when it is better to negotiate a plea and when it makes sense to argue your case to a jury.
Either way, we start with the assumption that everyone is innocent until the State has sufficient evidence to prove you guilty in a court of law in Charlotte NC.Should I Plead Guilty?
Do not assume the State's case is perfect. Criminal defense lawyers with any level of experience understand presenting a case can be complicated.
The State carries a substantial Burden of Proof. Proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt is the highest standard in the land. It's important to hold the prosecution to its Burden of Proof.
It's also important to understand that you have a right to remain silent. The Founding Fathers understood how important our individual rights are when facing the overwhelming power of the government.
Police officers regularly seek out confessions or statements from the people they believe are guilty. It helps fill in the holes in their case.
A confession can make a tremendous difference in the outcome of the matter. That applies to both violent crimes like assault and battery, felony assaults, and communicating threats as well as things like theft charges, larceny, and breaking and entering and drug crimes like possession charges or drug paraphernalia.
That's why we recommend people to Take the 5th and Lawyer Up immediately. It can make a huge difference in the long run.What Types of Cases Do You Handle?
Our criminal justice system provides protections to those accused of crimes. Part of how we serve clients as defense lawyers at Powers Law Firm, P.A. is to seek justice and do what is right.
We help people with a wide range of different types of criminal law cases in Charlotte NC that may include things like:
- Domestic Violence Defense
- Assault on a Female
- Simple Assault
- 50B Violations
- Communicating Threats
- Assault with a Deadly Weapon
- Felony Assault by Strangulation
- Assault on a Child
- Assault Charges
- Simple Assault
- Assault with Deadly Weapon Inflicting Serious Injury
- Shooting Into Vehicle
- Shooting Into Occupied Dwelling
- Drug Charges
- Possession Charges
- Simple Possession
- Misdemeanor Possession of Controlled Substances
- Misdemeanor Marijuana
- Drug Paraphernalia
- Felony Possession of Controlled Substances
- Sale and Delivery
- Sell or Deliver
- Trafficking Crimes
- PWISD Possession with Intent to Sell or Deliver
- Manufacturing Drugs
- Maintaining a Dwelling
- Traffic Violations
- Reckless Driving
- Lane Violations
- Careless Driving
- Following Too Closely
- Failure to Heed Blue Light or Siren
- Flee to Elude
- Resisting Arrest or "Resist Obstruct"
- Driving While Impaired
- DWI Charges in Charlotte
- Some people call that DUI or "drunk driving" or Driving Under the Influence
- Impaired Instruction
- DWLR Imp Rev - Driving While License Revoked Impaired Revocation
- DWI FIRST
- Death by Vehicle Charges
- Misdemeanor Death by Vehicle
- Felony Death by Vehicle
- Impaired Driving Accidents
- DWI related fatalities and accidents
- Accidents resulting in personal injury
- Deadly Weapon charges
- Felony Assault by Vehicle
- Larceny and Theft
- Misdemeanor Larceny
- Misdemeanor Shoplifting
- Unlawful Concealment
- Felony Larceny
- Breaking and Entering
- Felony Larceny after Breaking or Entering
- Felony Larceny by Employee
- Felony Embezzlement Charges
We have legal experience guiding clients through difficult legal times in North Carolina.
Once the attorney-client relationship begins, we want to roll up our sleeves and get to work without delay.
That's because when it comes to criminal defense in North Carolina, there is a LOT to do, and we think getting started immediately can be imperative to a successful defense.
Hard work and preparation can sometimes make the difference between hearing "Not Guilty" and "Guilty" in North Carolina criminal court. No successful criminal justice lawyer establishes a winning record by being lazy.
Our criminal defense lawyers handle matters from simple traffic violations to the most serious criminal cases involving Murder, Manslaughter and other felony accusations like felony assault, embezzlement, and sex charges.
Criminal law is serious stuff.
We are serious lawyers, dedicated to helping people in times of need.How Much Does It Cost to Talk to a Lawyer?
We provide a free consultation for criminal allegations.
When a client calls, our Charlotte criminal attorneys jump into action. We thoroughly review the facts of your case, consider the law, and prepare for battle in court when appropriate.
"We are defined by a desire to help, not by case type or practice group. That's why our telephone number is 704-342-HELP. We are North Carolina advocates dedicated to compassion, hard work, and skilled legal advocacy."
- Bill Powers
While our firm will handle more serious personal injury cases, employing our knowledge and experience of the law, science, and technology associated with drunken driving and DWI charges in NC.
We also handle family law matters, focusing on Domestic Violence, 50B Restraining Orders, and Collaborative Divorce.
Free consultation applies to criminal law matters and personal injury cases. It does NOT apply to divorce, separation, family law legal issues. Consultation fees, retainers, and hourly rates DO APPLY for family law issues.
Our law offices do NOT handle federal crime allegations or matters in federal court.
There are times when a client may be charged with offenses both in State and Federal Courts. For those matters, the Powers Law Firm PA may refer people to another charlotte criminal defense lawyer who focuses on charges in the respective federal courts and brought by the United States under the United States Code.Who is the Best Lawyer in Charlotte?
We firmly believe there is no such thing as the "best" of anything.
We think relying on a Google search for the "best DWI lawyer in Charlotte" or "best criminal defense lawyer in Charlotte" or the "Best Lawyer in Charlotte," the "best" of anything, especially regarding legal services, is not very helpful.
Why is that?
Who decides who is "best" at anything in life? And what does that even mean?No Such Thing as the "Best Lawyer"
We think there are many, many excellent criminal law attorneys in Mecklenburg County and throughout North Carolina in both state and federal courts. No one lawyer or law firm is the best in Charlotte criminal defense in our personal opinion.
Each lawyer and their respective law offices have their own strengths and weaknesses and perspectives on how to approach a case and how to treat people.
The key is what is best for you and your needs? What matters to you?
Why trust what someone said on Google, especially if you don't know that person? Furthermore, did that person have the same type of case as you?Is Your Lawyer a Specialist?
Some people don't realize that lawyers don't tend to handle every type of case or legal matter the comes in the door. Lawyers often limit their practice focus.
Some lawyers handle family law and divorce, but not issues involving domestic violence or restraining orders (50B Domestic Violence Protective Orders).
Other law firms handle only wills or estates or personal injury and accident cases.
Some criminal lawyers in Charlotte NC prefer to help people only with minor traffic tickets and never really take cases to trial or argue matters in a jury trial.
We think it's a good idea to ask, "Does this lawyer or law firm or law office handle my type of case? What is their experience? How do they treat people? Are they respected by other lawyers?
Bill Powers is a Criminal Law Specialist as recognized by the NBTA / NBLSC - National Board of Trial Attorneys / National Board of Legal Specialty CertificationQuestions You Should Ask
In searching for YOUR criminal defense lawyer, figure out what's important to you:
- Does cost matter?
- Are you looking for the cheapest criminal defense attorney out there?
- Do you plan to plead guilty to criminal charges without a fight?
- Should legal experience matter or are you OK with someone straight out of law school?
- Does legal representation include a trial or only a guilt
- What kind of legal services do you need?
- Does it involve a personal injury matter?
- Is it something related to criminal law?
- Is it a "white collar crime?"
- Is it employee theft, larceny, or embezzlement?
- Is it armed robbery?
- Is it disorderly conduct?
- How dedicated is your law firm to the development of the criminal laws in NC?
- Does your lawyer engage with the legal system, the courts, and even the North Carolina General Assembly?
- What legal materials has your lawyer written?
- How important is education, honing trial skills, and learning more about the practice of law, to the criminal defense attorney?
At the law offices of Powers Law Firm PA we believe criminal charges are extremely serious and that such legal matters demand substantial, real-world courtroom experience.
When you're going through a difficult time in your life, you need a criminal defense attorney who can help protect your interests and has the trial and court experience to give you the legal insight to make good decisions.
Information and preparation are important tools in any legal representation.
That is especially true for serious felony charges.
Criminal cases can be confusing and it's important to know your options. How things are handled in Charlotte NC and Monroe in Union County and Mooresville in Iredell County can be different.
Having legal help by your side, an attorney who understands how things work in the court system is critically important.
We recommend limiting your search for “lawyers near me" to those experienced NC attorneys who have a reputation for fighting in court and creatively challenging assumptions in taking on the tough cases.
Law firms in NC tend to focus their law practices on one of several different areas. Some Charlotte NC attorneys never set foot in a courtroom.
We handle criminal defense and family law issues in Charlotte. We are experienced in both presenting allegations of domestic violence and defending DV charges in Charlotte NC.Attorney Ratings for Criminal Lawyers Charlotte NC - Do Ratings Matter?
It's easy to be fooled by the "pay-to-play" rating companies that seem to pervade the business of legal representation.
"We're more than willing to share our credentials with potential clients, but we think choosing an attorney for legal representation should involve more than any plaque or award. Criminal charges are too important to focus on initial appearances. This isn't just a job for us. It's our passion."
- Bill Powers
Consider real-world experience in the courtroom. Ask questions. There should be more to a criminal defense lawyer. Being smart and well-versed in the law is a first step. Consider their dedication to the craft of practicing law, how they treat others, their personality, their demeanor, and their compassion for people charged with criminal offenses.Dedicated to Learning and Advancing the Law
"We defend people accused of criminal charges. Our attorneys in Charlotte NC are here to help people, not judge them."
- Bill Powers
It makes sense to figure out if your criminal defense lawyer teaches Continuing Legal Education - or what defense lawyers call "CLE."
Do they take the minimum number of hours required or do they go above and beyond the minimums, and take MORE HOURS?
Are they concerned with the basic levels of competence for legal representation or are they always challenging themselves to become better lawyers? Do they teach CLE? Do they lead seminars?
What do their peers think? What level of dedication do they have for the profession, for criminal defense, and for criminal charges.