The defenses raised in criminal cases generally fall into two categories: you did not commit the crime, or you committed the crime, but should not be held responsible.
The most powerful defense when you did not commit the crime is the establishment of a solid alibi. With an alibi, you have either eyewitness, testimony, or documentary evidence, such as hotel, restaurant, or other receipts, that places you somewhere else at the time of the commission of the crime.
Even if you do not have direct documentary or testimonial evidence absolving you, you can offer circumstantial evidence in your defense. Circumstantial evidence asks a jury to make a reasonable inference from all the evidence that you could not have committed the crime. The courts also accept testimony regarding your character, but this type of evidence is highly subjective.
Even if you admit that you committed the act prohibited by law, you may be entitled to acquittal based on certain defenses:
You can also ask the court to acquit you if law enforcement officers or prosecutors violated your rights during the criminal process. Examples include entrapment, double jeopardy, prosecutor misconduct, jury tampering, selective prosecution (racial profiling), and violation of any of your constitutional protections.
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