Skilled Violent Crime Lawyer in Morgan County, Georgia

Are you or a loved one facing prosecution for violent crimes? A conviction can be devastating. Georgia imposes mandatory prison sentences, upon conviction, for many of these offenses. To secure your rights and preserve any defenses, you need to retain a skilled and experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately.

Michael Fulcher Law offers residents of Morgan County, and the surrounding areas, over 17 years of experience as a prosecutor, public defender, and privately retained violent crimes lawyer. He knows all the Morgan County players—police, prosecutors, and judges—and will use this combination of experience, knowledge of the law and criminal procedure, and familiarity with the players to navigate outcomes to your benefit. We will vigorously defend you or your loved one with your best interests front and center. Call or contact Michael Fulcher Law online now to schedule a free consultation.

Have a Skilled Violent Crime Lawyer Defending Your Case

A skilled and experienced violent crime lawyer will analyze the prosecutor’s version of the story of what happened and develop a defense strategy based on the particular facts and circumstances of your case.

To preserve all your options, you should hire a violent crime attorney as soon as possible after you become the target of any investigation or after your arrest. You want a savvy defender by your side at each stage of a prosecution—bail hearing, arraignment, pretrial discovery and motion practice, plea negotiations, and if necessary, at trial.

Michael Fulcher Law has the courtroom experience you need to fully litigate your case. Of course, most prosecutions for violent crimes resolve with plea negotiation. However, if you are best served with a full trial, Michael Fulcher Law has over 17 years of trial experience. We will evaluate the prosecution’s case—was the arrest legal, was the search legal, were witnesses coached or coerced, was evidence properly handled, were chemical and toxicology tests conducted according to professional standards—and develop a defense strategy that fits the facts of your case.

CALL US NOW
FOR A FREE CONSULTATION

When you need a lawyer after being charged with a DUI or criminal offense or as you explore your options for filing a personal injury claim, look no further than Michael Fulcher Law’s impressive background, and ultra-attentive client service. To learn more about how we can help you achieve the best legal solution possible for your circumstances, call our criminal defense law firm at (706) 438-1555 or contact us online, and schedule your free consultation today.

CALL NOW (706) 438-1555

What are the types of violent crimes in Putnam County, Georgia?

Facing the prospect of a prison sentence and significant fines, you need to hire a violent crime lawyer in Georgia who will defend your rights and preserve all of your defenses. Michael Fulcher Law is here to represent you to our fullest, ready to build a viable defense. We have extensive experience representing Georgia residents accused of:

  • Armed robbery: a conviction for armed robbery carries a prison sentence of at least 10 years, without the option of parole, to a maximum sentence of 20 years to life.
  • Assault in all degrees: assault can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. A felony assault charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
  • Battery in all degrees: battery, too, can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. A felony battery charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison depending on the kind of violence used and the resulting injuries.
  • Domestic violence: sentencing upon conviction depends on the underlying charges—assault, battery, stalking, criminal damage to property, unlawful restraint, or criminal damage to property and can reach up to 20 years in prison.
  • DUI vehicular homicide: when charged as a felony, sentences can range from 3-15 years in prison.
  • Manslaughter: depending on the circumstances, manslaughter can carry a sentence of up to 20 years in prison.
  • Murder: a conviction for murder requires a mandatory sentence of life in prison.
  • Weapons charges: pointing a gun at another or discharging a gun on a public road can result in a sentence of up to 12 months in jail. Possessing a prohibited weapon—bazookas, hand grenades, mortars, rocket launchers, sawed-off shotguns and rifles, and silencers—can bring a sentence of up to 5 years in prison. Taking a gun into a school zone is a felony punishable from 2-10 years in prison.

Facing these charges is daunting. A skilled and experienced violent crime lawyer by your side each step of the way will help you to better understand the nature of the proceedings and fiercely advocate on your behalf.

Michael Fulcher Law will use all our accumulated knowledge and skill to defend you. Here is some of what we do:

  • We will thoroughly investigate your case, to fully uncover and understand the scope of the prosecutor’s case.
  • We will find the flaws and ambiguities in the witnesses’ accounts of what happened.
  • We will cross-examine witnesses, digging for inconsistencies and finding all of the contradictions.
  • We will find witnesses to testify on your behalf, including experts to draw doubt into the prosecution’s story.
  • We will devise an overall legal strategy as well as interim steps for each stage of the prosecution.
  • We will advise you on plea bargain offers from the prosecutor.
  • We will use the law and judicial precedent to challenge evidence and testimony to create reasonable doubt.

Frequently Asked Questions

The FBI defines violent crime as murder, and non-negligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. These offenses involve force or the threat of force. Violent crime has been decreasing in frequency in Georgia from a high in 1989-1991. However, the murder rate in Georgia increased precipitously in 2021: a 44.2% increase from 2019 to 2020, the last year’s statistics are currently available. In 2020 there were 943 murders in Georgia, up from 654 the year before.

Hiring a qualified violent crime attorney to represent you or a loved one is an important decision. In asking these questions, listen carefully to the answers, and take the time to decide whether this lawyer seems like a good fit for you. These questions are intended to help you to get to know the prospective lawyer. Communication, compassion, knowledge of the law, and players, and fierce advocacy are qualities you should be looking for.

  1. How long have you been practicing law? With a felony conviction looming as a possibility, you want a lawyer with years of experience who knows how to navigate the criminal justice system, and whose experience leads you to trust him or her to guide you through each of the stages. Knowing the police, prosecutors, and judges allows for nuanced defense strategies. Knowing these players also prompts realistic plea negotiations with prosecutors., and because the stakes are so high, you want a lawyer who is an experienced trial attorney, with real experience cross-examining police officers, state experts, and eyewitnesses; who understand evidentiary law, a skill that is only achieved from courtroom experience;, and who has a way of connecting with the members of the jury so that they listen to your version of what happened.

  1. Where did you go to law school, and what are your professional credentials? Although law school is not determinative of savvy as a violent crime defense lawyer, it is one way to understand whom your lawyer knows, and how your lawyer is seen by others in the profession. Local law graduates often know more of the players than someone who went to school in another state. Ask about the attorney’s professional memberships, and whether teaching continuing legal education programs is part of your lawyer’s regular activities.

  1. How many cases have you handled like mine? Your lawyer’s understanding how the prosecution moves a case forward can provide you with a clearer roadmap, and more. Your lawyer’s experience will help you to trust his or her advice more because it is grounded in reality.

  1. What do you consider success in a case like mine? Find out whether your attorney has been successful in having charges dismissed, pleading clients to lesser charges, going to trial, and getting an acquittal, or losing at trial. What constitutes success depends on the facts of each case, and whether there are evidentiary, witness, or legal defenses that can exonerate you or lessen the penalties.

  1. How often do your cases go to trial? A question like this opens up a discussion about the steps your attorney will take to investigate the case, file motions pretrial to limit evidence and/or testimony, and how your lawyer approaches mandatory deadlines for plea bargains. Criminal trials are time-consuming, and expensive. They are not always the best route to take. Once again, it all depends on the facts of your case, and how an experienced attorney can use those facts to your benefit.

  1. How many times have you represented felony defendants in Walton County? The reputation of a violent crime lawyer means a lot within the criminal justice system, so you want to know how familiar your lawyer is with the judges, and prosecutors in this county, and the surrounding areas: Walton, Greene, Morgan, Jasper, Putnam, or Taliaferro Counties.

  1. Who will be working on my case? Find out how many lawyers work in the firm, whether there is an in-house investigator, and how lawyers are assigned to work on a case. In many larger firms, it is likely that an associate, a less experienced lawyer, will be doing at least some of the work on your case. Ask to meet that lawyer so that you can develop a rapport with everyone who will be defending you.

  1. Do I have a viable defense? You want a lawyer who will explain how a criminal case proceeds, and show you where the weaknesses might be found in the prosecution’s case. At the time you are hiring a lawyer, the case has not been fully developed. No one has yet seen the evidence, the witness lists, or various reports from toxicology, medical examiners, or other experts. Remember no one can promise you a specific outcome. But an experienced criminal defense attorney knows where to look for police, and prosecutor errors that erode the strength of the prosecution’s case against you.

  1. Do I have a role in my own defense? At a minimum, you will be asked to provide information, and documents, and might be asked to help in preparing questions to ask witnesses. You should never contact a witness or do legal work on your own. If out of custody, you might help your case by enrolling in an alcohol or drug treatment program, counseling, or maintaining employment so that your probation report reflects your capacity to live in society.

  1. How much will you charge to represent me? Up front you should understand the fee arrangement with any criminal defense attorney. Fees charged by a lawyer can be hourly, with different fees attaching to different members of the firm. You need to ask if you have to pay a retainer, an upfront payment to cover the start of representation.

Or a lawyer might charge a flat fee to represent you in pretrial proceedings up until trial, with a different arrangement if the case goes to a full trial. Some lawyers charge hourly for preparation with a daily fee for court appearances. In addition to lawyer’s fees, there may be witness costs, investigation costs, and court costs for transcripts.

Very few cases actually go to trial for a variety of reasons. The criminal justice system is already backlogged, with different counties having different realistic time periods in which a criminal case is resolved. If you are out of custody, a slower proceeding might be to your benefit, giving you, and your family a longer period to prepare for incarceration, if a plea negotiation requires a jail or prison sentence. Although full dismissal of all charges remains rare, your defense lawyer will engage in a thorough investigation into the facts of your case to give you a realistic appraisal of whether dismissal or pleading guilty to lesser charges is the right way to go. Developing a probation report that shows attention to any alcohol or drug problems or anger management, and which reflects steady employment, and a stable home environment will certainly help with sentencing. Again, here is where experience counts in a violent crime defense lawyer.

The United States Constitution Bill of Rights, made applicable to the states through the Fourteenth Amendment, guarantees a criminal defendant specific rights. The Fourth Amendment protects against unreasonable searches, and seizures of your property by police. The Fifth Amendment guarantees your right to remain silent, and not to be compelled to give testimony that might convict you. The Sixth Amendment covers criminal trials. Its provisions include the right to a speedy, and public trial before an unbiased jury of peers. It requires that the charges be publicly brought, disallowing secret charges., and the Sixth Amendment guarantees the right to counsel in a criminal prosecution, with a lawyer provided if you cannot afford one.

For a misdemeanor, the prosecution files an information, which is the official document charging the crime that you supposedly committed. An indictment is used to formally charge if a capital felony is made, meaning that a death sentence is a possible sentence upon conviction.

The information or indictment begins the criminal process. Next, you will appear at an arraignment where the charges are read, and you will be asked to enter a plea. You should be represented by criminal defense counsel at this arraignment. If you cannot afford a lawyer, the court will appoint one for you at that time.

The next hearing is when the defendant appears with a lawyer. The judge sets the motion schedule, plea deadline, and trial date. The motion schedule allows for the defense attorney to file any motions to exclude evidence, compel evidence, and identify witnesses. The plea deadline is the date by which any plea bargain is finalized, and ready to present to the judge for approval., and of course, there is the trial date, affording you the right to a public trial before a jury of peers.

Most cases do not go to trial for a variety of reasons. A skilled, and competent criminal defense lawyer knows how to negotiate with prosecutors after discovery of all the evidence, so that those negotiations take into consideration the strength of the prosecutor’s case; your prior criminal record, if any;, and of course, the nature of the crime. That plea bargain might lessen the charges, forego jail or prison time, mandate counseling or drug treatment, or pay restitution.

A trial can last for several days to over months, depending on the complexity of the charges, the number of defendants, and the amount of evidence that needs to be admitted. Most criminal trials are held before juries, although you can choose to have a trial before a judge alone. After the prosecution offers its case, the defense has an opportunity to cross-examine the prosecution witnesses, and to present a separate defense, if necessary. Sometimes the best defense is no defense, merely highlighting the weaknesses in the prosecution’s case to create reasonable doubt. A trial ends with closing arguments, and instructions to the jury as to how to evaluate the facts in light of the applicable law.

A not guilty verdict results in the immediate release of the defendant from custody. The case is over.

A guilty verdict continues the judge’s role to sentencing., and a defendant can appeal a guilty verdict based on evidentiary or legal grounds.

Contact our Violent Crime Lawyer in Walton County, Georgia

You deserve skilled and competent legal representation when facing a violent crime prosecution. A good lawyer will guide you through the stress of a prosecution while rigorously defending your rights, preserving defenses, and challenging the prosecution to be fair.

Michael Fulcher knows criminal law, with over 15 years of experience as a prosecutor, public defender, and privately retained defense counsel. That experience includes a deep understanding of law, criminal procedure, and familiarity with all of the players—police, prosecutors, and judges—in Walton, Morgan, Greene, Putnam, Taliaferro, and Jasper Counties.

Michael Fulcher Law will fiercely defend your legal rights, honestly assess the strength of the prosecution’s case, and advise you on a course of action that is in your best interests.

With offices in Monroe and Madison, we are conveniently located. To accommodate you, we can also arrange for a confidential teleconference.

Call or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Your free consultation with Michael Fulcher Law is confidential, covered by attorney-client privilege. Your frank answers to all questions will assure a realistic assessment of the charges so that we can advise you on your rights, defenses, and how to proceed.

AMAZING WORK

“Mr. Fulcher has been tremendously helpful with my case. Since hiring him he has consistently returned my calls as quickly as he can. We discussed an ideal outcome, and I set about doing exactly as he said. Following his advice we were able to get a very favorable outcome. He is always quick to answer any questions, and has stayed very engaged with me throughout this ordeal. Michael provides excellent counsel, and I would recommend him to anyone!”

— TOM

READ MORE REVIEWS