|Weighing the real costs of prison.|
Vermeer, Woman Holding a Balance
Ultimately the goal of the process for some judges seems to be simply to harshly punish rather than to find the best remedy for whatever caused the criminal allegation in the first place. For a defense lawyer the driving force of presentations to the judge should be to read the judge's mind to find the best arguments for a non-prison sentence of probation, house arrest or work release. For most cases within the criminal justice system a prison only ruins the lives of the offender and his family and does nothing to help rehabilitate him. Is jail really necessary for a drug crime such as possession of cocaine or for a crime against property such as grand theft? What are the real costs of sending someone to prison?
Does the judge consider that the defendant will lose his job? Does the judge know that the family will lose their home? Does the judge understand that the children will no longer have a parent? Therefore it's necessary for the criminal defense attorney to touch the very heart of the sentencing judge so that he fully comprehends all of the dire consequences a sentence of prison will mean in balancing for a fair decision. So often in criminal law we see the results of a harsh sentencing is far worse than the very crime being answered.