A violent crime occurs when a person uses (or threatens to use) violence to harm another person, including rape, assault, and murder. The penalties for violent crimes are stiff; conviction almost always carries substantial jail time. If you are accused of a violent crime, you need an attorney with experience defending others in that particular crime, one who will understand how to best defend you based on your facts and circumstances. Sometimes the government will offer a “plea bargain,” meaning they will drop or lower the charges if you agree to a lesser crime. A violent crime lawyer will be able to evaluate the government's case and the terms of the bargain to suggest how to proceed in your best interests.