5 – If a resolution cannot be reached between defense counsel and the prosecutor, a trial will take place. A jury trial can be an all or nothing result. Either 1) the accused is acquitted and released from custody and the case is no longer pending; or 2) a conviction is returned and a judge can sentence the convicted person to jail or prison for the maximum term allowed by law.
Two types of trials are available: 1) a jury trial; and 2) a bench trial.
In a jury trial, 12 individuals from the community will be selected and they will be asked to decide whether or not the accused is guilty or not guilty of the crime charged.
A jury trial can last many days depending on the complexity of the case and the number of witnesses. After the evidence is presented, the jury will deliberate as long as the need to reach a verdict. If a verdict is not reached, the trial will be declared a mistrial.
In a bench trial, a judge determines whether or not you are guilty. The evidence is presented in the same manner and the rules of court and of evidence are the same as for a jury trial.
Contact the Law Offices of Christian M. Ham today to discuss your legal options. Contact us online or call 619-236-1983.