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Do I have a right to see the evidence against me before deciding on a plea?

Orlando, FL |

How am I supposed to decide whether to go to trial or not if I have not seen the evidence against me? My lawyer is stating he has received a plea which I think is ridiculous since this is my first offense and I have seen no evidence. My lawyer also implied that he would put some of his own money in for restitution because it would cost him more to go to trial. Does this make sense?

Attorney Answers 7

  1. That makes no sense at all. You have the right to know the witnesses and evidence against you to decide whether a plea offer is in your best interest or not. How can you make an informed decision about whether to enter a guilty or no contest plea until you are convinced the State has the evidence to prove the charge beyond a reasonable doubt? Your lawyer can receive a plea offer from the state prior to their disclosure of discovery, but normally does not counsel you to accept it until he has reviewed all the evidence against you. The final point about your lawyer putting in his own money to cover your restitution is very unusual and I would question the motives. Perhaps he is inexperienced and is fearful of trying the case. You might want to consult with another attorney. Good luck.

  2. You have an absolute right to see the State's discovery (evidence) including photographs, written statements, physical evidence, etc. Good luck.

  3. First of all you have every right to see the evidence and/or discovery the State has in its possession. Secondly how did your lawyer imply that he would pay some of his own money toward your restitution to avoid going to trial? If he actually said this or implied this that is highly unethical. I would RUN not walk to get away from this attorney and seek new counsel.

    If you find my answer to be helpful or the best answer, please make sure to mark your choice. **COMMUNICATION ON THIS SITE DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY/CLIENT RELATIONSHIP.**

  4. It is not uncommon for a prosecutor to make an offer early on in a case based off of the arrest report and a person's history. You do and should take the time to go over the evidence against you in order to make an informed decision about what is the smartest route to go with your case.

    For more information or to contact this attorney, visit or call 407-412-7234. This information is for general purpose only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney- client relationship.

  5. You have the right to reject a plea offer, but the State has the option to offer a plea before their time to comply with discovery is up or in lieu of filing any motions to either obtain it or other substantive motions. The State does not have an obligation at any time to make a plea offer. You have the right to review the case with the attorney and if you do not feel the State will be able to prove their case, you can roll the dice and call their bluff. You can ask if your attorney can call over to inquire what evidence they have ahead of your accepting the offer. If the attorney knows them well enough, they might be able to get something preliminary to aid you in the decision process.

  6. By my count this is the third time you've posted this same question.

    If you are that concerned with the actions of your attorney, you need to seek out another one. Quickly, since this is a criminal matter.

  7. Yes you can not possibly make a fully informed, intelligent decision on what route to take with your case unless you are fully advised about the evidence the State intends to use against you. The only exception to this would be a Federal case where they are not required to provide discovery.

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