Show of HandsShow of Hands

Show Of Hands June 2nd, 2012 12:00am

As an attorney, would you feel guilty about successfully defending a client that you knew had committed a violent crime?

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BelleReve Nevada
06/12/12 1:20 pm

Yes, that's why I'm not a lawyer. Lawyers are supposed to win the case for their client; in this hypothetical situation, the lawyer was successful. If you work with law, you need to be as impartial/subjective as possible.

BelleReve Nevada
06/12/12 1:20 pm

Yes, that's why I'm not a lawyer. Lawyers are supposed to win the case for their client; in this hypothetical situation, the lawyer was successful. If you work with law, you need to be as impartial/subjective as possible.

06/11/12 12:04 am

That's why most don't do it. And that's fine. The law was not made to be easy or happy. It was made to be the best system that gave the fairest results. Love it or hate it, it's the system that works.

06/11/12 12:01 am

Jasher, my point was that guilt does not matter. You are hired to represent the law and make sure they are fairly represented. Even if they are guilty, you are not required to not represent them. Your job is to be an officer of the law, not of your own morals. Yes, this is difficult for most

monty New York
06/10/12 8:37 pm

Usually yes because what if you're a great lawyer you should be saving innocent people rather than a guilty person

06/09/12 8:34 am

No. Apathy and impartiality motivates defense attorneys.

JAsher Fishers, IN
06/08/12 10:49 am

would morally be obligated to drop his case. There are ALWAYS facts and evidence that may change the case completely around.

JAsher Fishers, IN
06/08/12 10:48 am

I, personally, would need to review all of the evidence before thanking this guy's case, and if I thought he was actually defending his daughter (at the time of the encounter), then I would take the case. But, if the evidence starts showing the guy was in the wrong, and I believed him guilty, then I

JAsher Fishers, IN
06/08/12 10:44 am

are still not the one who gets to make the call. Maybe your 16 y/o daughter chatted with this guy online, made him think she was 19, even had a fake ID, and then had sex with the man, but lied to you about it all. This is why you don't get to play executioner!

JAsher Fishers, IN
06/08/12 10:43 am

We have a judicial system to handle these people. You are not law enforcement, nor a judge, so you don't get to take that kind of action. Maybe your daughter dressed like a slut and asked the guy to have sex with her. So, then you'd still be in the wrong. We can take this to so many levels, but you

06/07/12 10:21 pm

Ok. The guy is being charged with murder bc he killed the guy that molested his child. Ya. Id defend him. The charge is irrelevant. It's the process that matters.

06/07/12 1:30 pm

Person bellow-- Uhm they said VIOLET crimes like murder assault battery rape etc

06/07/12 10:58 am

Jasher: getting a guilty man off doesn't mean you have no morals. What if the law was immoral. For example: drug laws. I woul defend a man clearly guilty of weed possession bc I disagree with the law that says he should go to jail. That's not immoral, that's very moral.

JAsher Fishers, IN
06/06/12 11:03 pm

I would feel guilty, because you have the right, as well as, I feel, the moral obligation, to turn down a case for someone you know is guilty, or don't believe is innocent. Taking the case of someone you know is guilty, with intent to get them off scott-free, means you have no moral code.

2ndafe Flat lands of Ohio
06/06/12 8:23 pm

Successful defense does not always mean Scott free. It just means fair outcome.

06/06/12 5:05 pm

i would have just been doin my job

06/06/12 12:46 pm

it's their job to make the prosecution prove their case. they're a check on the system. So no, I wouldn't feel guilty if I were in that position.

06/06/12 10:55 am

It's not about the individual. It's about something bigger than that. It's about protecting the ideas our forefathers laid out in the constitution. Better 1,000 guilty men be set free than one innocent man be convicted.

Gelidity Pennsylvania
06/06/12 1:19 am

Then you better learn to reason better than that Charles.

charles02 Charleston,SC
06/05/12 8:55 pm

And btw I wanna be a lawyer when I grow up

charles02 Charleston,SC
06/05/12 8:54 pm

U do what u get paid to do just like a hitman killing a puppy it may be wrong but he gets paid

Lola54 New York
06/05/12 3:26 pm

if you know they did it, they can't walk away without any punishment. it's your job to make sure that they receive the right punishment, and the best bargain

06/05/12 12:52 pm

I could never be a lawyer..too many corrupt, evil, filth out there..and the judicial system favors those kind of people...

06/05/12 12:49 pm

I would never defend anyone who committed vehicular manslaughter..EVER..I'd sentence them to the chair..

06/04/12 9:38 pm

@kogane Most people would say it isn't harsh enough.

garretj 37130
06/04/12 9:24 pm

If this is any indication, 85% of people have no concept of how the criminal justice system works. No one should ever feel guilty for participating in due process.

06/04/12 3:56 pm

Id make him plea bargain.

ladestra Urban Conservative
06/04/12 1:35 pm

I'm sure someone's already said this but as an attorney you can always recuse yourself from a case btw I back you up snuzzy it's just the ACLU that give the rest a bad name

06/04/12 12:39 pm

The things people say about attorneys on here cracks me up. All attorneys "have no morals" Love the judgmental streak. We are friends with a couple of lawyers & they are both really great guys. They are super active in our community & good Christian men.

06/04/12 8:23 am

No I wouldn't. I might feel guilty if I got him/her let go, but I wouldn't if I simply got them a lesser sentence. Our judicial system is way too harsh...

06/04/12 12:09 am

The crime doesn't matter, the guilt doesn't matter. The only thing that matters is that everyone is entitled to a defense.

Kato Minnesota
06/03/12 11:58 pm

It totally depends in the crime in my book and there reason for doin it

06/03/12 10:31 pm

Apparently, 15% of show of Hands participants are underemployed defense attorneys.

BabyBoomer Illinois
06/03/12 9:17 pm

I wonder how many attorneys answered this one! Yes that's an exclamation mark. I lawyers had a conscience they wouldn't be lawyers.

06/03/12 7:50 pm

Hmmmm...Devil's Advocate! One of my favorite movies...

adalla Virginia
06/03/12 7:18 pm

... that's how the system was intended to work as well.

So no, I would not feel the least bit guilty.

adalla Virginia
06/03/12 7:18 pm

In the first place you don't "know" whether he's guilty unless you were there. The trial is meant to determine whether the evidence is sufficient to prove guilt (bard). If the defense is "successful" it's because the evidence was insufficient or not credible. If he gets off on a technicality...

06/03/12 5:20 pm

Does this mean that DAs are bad/wrong too? They try to convince people that they are not 100% sure are guilty.

06/03/12 3:36 pm

@north and wench one the question only deals with defense attorneys. Two plenty of defense attorneys have morals and plenty of prosecutors are horrible people. You can't say that having a job makes you a bad person.

06/03/12 3:32 pm

If I agreed that the crime was wrong, but I would never help someone get off in that case.

06/03/12 2:47 pm

I wouldn't defend someone who commited a violent crime in the first place. Hence I'm not a lawyer.

06/03/12 12:49 pm

Defense attorney don't spend all day getting child molesters out of jail. They also defend the father that killed his sons abuser, the 15 year old that made a few bad choices and smoked some weed and is facing a harsh sentence, & believe it or not, they defend many innocent people falsely accused

06/03/12 12:46 pm

Defense attorneys have morals too. Law is a very moral profession. Yes, there are alot of joke about it, but in all reality, attorneys must sign a very high code of ethics and the American Bar Association is very serious about informing those ethics.

EarlyBird Portland
06/03/12 12:39 pm

Smtim- as difficult as is is to understand, something you said makes sense. The defense isn't simply defending the accused but more importantly, defending the law. I get it. Thank you.

06/03/12 12:07 pm

@ North, I beg to differ, prosecutors have morals & values, scruples too!

06/03/12 11:36 am

The key to this question is, "as an attorney...". Everyone knows that attornies have no morals, no scruples, no value system. If it were "me", I couldn't do it. If I were an attorney, it's just another day at the office.

06/03/12 10:27 am

The constitution and the amendment therein were not created for the times we want to follow it and when it's convenient. It was created for the times it's hard, when we would want to stray away bc it would be convenient. But these are the same times we must be extra careful to follow it.

06/03/12 10:26 am

Putting a guilty man behind bars with bad evidence sounds nice and dandy, but that kind of sloppiness leads to falsely putting innocent people behind bars with bad evidence. And this happens all the time. Innocent people get put in jail for crimes all the time.

TallyLu80 Oklahoma
06/03/12 9:59 am

Why I couldn't be a lawyer-
If I knew my client was guilty, but was good enough to find a loophole that would throw out the case, my conscience would get to me. If they were a murderer, I would feel like the spirit would haunt me for not bringing their killer to justice lol