A first-degree murder charge means that you’re accused of taking another person’s life in a manner that was premeditated and willful. There are very specific elements that are part of a first-degree murder charge, so defendants have the opportunity to call each one into question as part of their defense strategy.
The prosecution will have to prove that your case meets all of the required conditions if you’re going to be convicted of first-degree murder. Typically, a defense strategy for murder will revolve around poking holes in the prosecution’s claims. This can be by questioning points they’re using to try to say it was premeditated or by questioning the motive they’re claiming.
What are some goals that are common in these cases?
One of the more common goals in a first-degree murder case is to have the charge reduced to a lesser charge. This means that you would have a less serious sentence than what’s possible with first-degree murder. In some cases, this is done through a plea bargain, but that option is only possible if you admit that you did take the victim’s life.
Another goal might be getting the charge dropped completely or being found not guilty during a trial. This might seem difficult, but there are instances in which it’s happened. Your options often depend on the facts of the case and what the prosecution can actually prove.
Facing a first-degree murder charge is serious because you’re facing a lifetime behind bars. It’s imperative that you work swiftly to find out your options for a defense strategy so you can start working on getting it together. Working with someone who’s familiar with cases of this magnitude is beneficial so you can determine what options are possible and how they might affect your future.