Winning Violent Crimes Cases
No reasonable person accused of a violent crime, whether it is murder, assault & battery, armed robbery, rape or domestic violence, is unaware of the seriousness of his circumstances and the need to retain the services of an experienced criminal defense lawyer. If you were not serious about finding and retaining the best Cambridge criminal defense lawyer available, you would never have found your way to our webpage.
To whom can you entrust your life?
Not every Cambridge, Massachusetts criminal defense lawyer, never mind every general practitioner, is capable of successfully defending an individual accused of a violent crime. Prosecutors are often highly experienced, tough, and seasoned trial lawyers. To maximize your chances of an acquittal or a fairly negotiated plea, your lawyer must possess these same qualities – and more. The Mahoney Criminal Defense Group is led by Attorney Kevin J. Mahoney, who has successfully defended numerous individuals of serious felonies, including 1st degree murder, aggravated rape, armed robbery, domestic violence, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, arson, kidnapping, and weapons charges in courts throughout Massachusetts.
Overcoming the Challenges at Trial
While nearly every type of criminal case presents an array of challenges, violent crimes cases are more challenging than most. Though violence may fascinate us as we watch television, it is another matter altogether for jurors seated feet from a person accused of assault and battery, a stabbing, or worse. Experienced prosecutors subtly, and not so subtly, play on these fears. And frightened jurors convict. A criminal defense lawyer practicing in Massachusetts must understand these challenges and be able to overcome them.
Winning Opening Statements
To neutralize the impact of disturbing accusations, wrenching testimony, and the impact of unsettling evidence – such as bloody clothing or a weapon – a thinking criminal defense lawyer will address these concerns in his opening statement, refocusing the jury’s attention on the shortcomings of the government’s evidence. But, an opening statement is more than a defense attorney’s chance to combat the prosecutor’s version of events; it’s his chance to tell a more compelling story, to humanize a client who has been unfairly demonized, and to set the foundation for his cross-examination. Because most Massachusetts criminal defense lawyers view an opening statement as the third-rail of trial work, they offer vague rebuttals, duck hard evidence, and seek refuge in “reasonable doubt.” Where these criminal lawyers fear hazards, Attorney Mahoney seizes opportunities.
In war the only sure defense is offense, and the efficiency of the offense depends on the warlike souls of those conducting it.
~ George S. Patton
After the clash of opening statements, the trial will be fought on the difficult, uneven terrain of cross-examination. Few cross-examinations are easy when the client is accused of a violent crime. Steely “victims” are absolutely certain or retreating into victimhood, seasoned detectives are eager to pounce on an ill-advised question, and experts feast on unwary lawyers who carelessly wander onto their well-defined turf. It’s a battle of wits, emotions, opinions, facts and momentum. These perils can paralyze well-meaning lawyers. But, cross-examination offers the skilled trial lawyer his best chance to win the trial. Kevin J. Mahoney is the author of Relentless Criminal Cross-Examination, the fastes selling book in the history of James Publishing. Attorney Mahoney has a proven record of unmasking alleged victims, revealing the pre-determined nature of investigations, and exposing the inadequacies of the state’s forensic evidence. Effective cross-examine turns the jurors against the police for shoddy investigative practices, the alleged victim for such a baseless accusation, and the prosecutor for misstating the strength of his case.
A trial consists of more than opening statements, testimony, and arguments. Jurors carefully eye those accused of violent crimes looking for some reaction, whether it’s anger, frustration or fear, betraying his capacity for the violent act for which he stands accused. How does an innocent person act when he sits day after day listening to the prosecutor, witnesses, and detectives portray him as an unrepentant fiend? In such a chamber of horrors, where every word and expression is amplified, the understandable emotions of the innocent can easily be misinterpreted for the callow temperament of the criminal. To counter this unfair dynamic, we instruct our clients to remain passive, but interested during the course of the trial. When the jurors realize that they cannot decipher his “guilt” from his demeanor, they focus on the witnesses and the evidence – which is exactly where we want their attention directed.
Winning Trials is About Emotion, Not Legal Arguments
A trial is, or should be, about competing versions of the same event. As someone from the Clinton years might quip, “It’s about the story, stupid.” While arguing pre-trial motions, making objections, and submitting well-crafted language for the judge to include in his final instructions to the jury may give a lawyer an edge, successful lawyers spend the vast majority of their preparation time on opening statements and cross-examination. That’s where real trial lawyers win trials – not on pretty language and half-baked legal arguments. When deliberating, jurors want to get it right. And they’re very likely to have made up their minds long before the defense lawyer rose to give his closing argument or the judge read the final instructions. Once emotionally committed to one side or the other jurors are not easily reclaimed – especially when the client is accused of a violent crime. We focus on telling our clients’ stories, not on legalese. That’s why we win.
Retain an Experienced Massachusetts Criminal Defense Lawyer
Call us at 617-492-0055 to arrange a free in office consultation with an experienced, dedicated Cambridge criminal trial attorney.