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Is a guilty plea a good strategy for criminal defense?

When someone is accused of a crime and there seems to be ample evidence to support conviction, it can feel like a hopeless situation. Having a criminal record can impact numerous areas of a person’s life, from employment to housing to one’s personal life. However, there are options for criminal defense that may result in a better outcome than a person may have assumed was possible. This could even mean pleading guilty to a certain crime, depending on one’s circumstances. This seems to have been the strategy used by one Alaska man charged with burglary and several other crimes.

Police say that the incident happened this past summer. A call came into law enforcement saying that an unknown individual was on top of a local mall. The report claimed the person was attempting to break in. A business owner let police into the mall when they arrived. A search turned up the suspect in the air ducts. Officers claim that the man initially would not come out of hiding, but eventually they were able to extract him.

Reports say that the mall sustained about $1,000 in damage and that around $1,500 worth of products was stolen. Police arrested the suspect and charged him with several crimes, including two counts of burglary and one tor theft. The suspect recently pleaded guilty to the burglary charges and is now awaiting sentencing. His other charges have been dismissed.

In this case, the suspect may have been able to negotiate a plea agreement that he found less disruptive to his life. This is precisely why having thorough criminal defense is so important to anyone accused of a crime. Everyone is presumed innocent until – and only if — proven guilty in court and beyond a reasonable doubt, and a skilled attorney here in Alaska can work to facilitate the best possible outcome.