It is very difficult for someone who committed burglary in the first degree to enter a diversion program. For example, drug court does not allow someone charged with a violent crime to enroll in the program. A first-degree burglary charge would have to be amended to something lesser to even allow somebody to be eligible for drug court. However, that is very difficult because these are considered violent crimes, and prosecutors are not very willing to accommodate people whom they feel have committed acts of violence. It is possible to get a deferred or suspended sentence on these charges. However, that would, in the vast majority of cases, likely only apply to a first-time offender.
Prosecutors will likely not be willing to offer a deferred or suspended sentence for these crimes, so another way to get a deferred or suspended sentence would be through a blind plea.
What Is A Blind Plea In Oklahoma?
A blind plea is essentially where the defendant throws himself or herself on the mercy of the court. Think of it like a mini trial. The defendant admits guilt and basically asks the judge for mercy. The prosecutor puts on their case as to why the defendant should receive the punishment the prosecutor thinks the defendant deserves. Then, the defense has the opportunity to tell the court what they think the punishment should be. As a defense attorney, we hope that the judge sees our point of view better than the prosecutor’s. This is a good time to present mitigating evidence that you may not have otherwise been able to bring up in trial, so it’s a good idea to know a lot about the client’s background and good things they’ve done.
For instance, you can talk about the client’s military service and their upbringing. Maybe they lived in a foster home and had a lot of very negative influences, or maybe their parents were drug addicts. These are things that a defense attorney can use to humanize the client and hopefully get the judge to feel sympathy. A blind plea is a good thing to do when the offer from the prosecutor is bad and you don’t think that going to a jury trial would get you a much better outcome.
For more information on Implications Of A Burglary Conviction, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (405) 633-3420 today.