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How Mitigating Factors Can Reduce Your Sentence

 Posted on April 25, 2024 in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerThere are some cases where being convicted of a crime is inevitable, even with the best legal representation possible. A skilled Frisco, TX criminal defense lawyer may be able to have your charges reduced to a lesser offense through plea bargaining, sometimes turning a felony into a misdemeanor. There is more your lawyer can do to try to reduce your sentence even after a conviction or guilty plea is entered. Mitigating factors, or circumstances that show the defendant was less blameworthy than it may appear, can be a big part of your criminal defense strategy. Even in the most serious cases, the existence of mitigating factors can make an enormous difference in how the defendant is sentenced. You should discuss with your attorney how mitigation might help you.

Common Mitigating Factors in Texas

Some of the mitigating factors that your attorney may use to help you include:

  • Taking responsibility - Acknowledging that you did something wrong can go a long way toward convincing the court to show leniency. 
  • Lack of a record - If you do not have a criminal record - or have only a very minor offense from a long time ago - the court may believe that you made a one-time mistake and do not deserve harsh punishment. 
  • Having a mental illness - If you have a mental illness that contributed to your role in the crime, the court may see this as a mitigating circumstance. People who struggle with mental illness or other mental impairments are less able to control their behavior than others. 
  • Any duress you faced - If you were pressured, coerced, blackmailed, or threatened into committing the crime, the court will likely consider you less culpable. Younger defendants often commit crimes after facing extensive pressure from older friends or family members. 
  • The victim’s culpability - Not all victims are perfectly blameless. Although your attorney will need to carefully avoid victim-blaming, he can bring up anything the victim did to provoke you. For example, if you injured your romantic partner after years of emotional abuse at his hands, this will be relevant. 
  • Your age and intelligence - Young defendants can often show that they made mistakes due to a lack of life experience, while defendants of low intelligence can often show that they did not fully understand what they were doing when they committed a crime. 

Contact a Collin County, TX Criminal Defense Attorney

Law Offices of Biederman & Burleson P.L.L.C. will raise any mitigating factor that could be used to reduce your sentence. Our dedicated Frisco, TX criminal defense lawyers have been recognized by Super Lawyers and received numerous other accolades for their success. Contact us at 469-333-3333 for a complimentary consultation.

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