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The word behavior is a word that is not used as much today as it was in years past. Any time we see a word that is not used often, we can react in one of two ways. We can recklessly ignore it, or we can try to understand its meaning in order to apply it to our lives for our best success. If we look up the word in the Dictionary, we see that behavior is defined as “external behavior, conduct, behavior, and manners.” Why would behavior in the courtroom have any effect on the outcome of my case? Do my inner thoughts and beliefs cause me to act or behave in a way that hurts me? Does the way I act, look and behave cause other people to treat me negatively? Do I really want to win my case? Let’s talk about it.

At war with the police, the prosecution and the court?

After years of interviewing defendants who have faced serious criminal charges, a common thread that seems to run through these cases is that defendants often feel they are at war with the police. At some point in their lives, the model of the policeman as friend changed to the policeman as enemy. The role of the police never really changed. In 1840, 1920 and 2010 the role of the police is the same: stop crime and arrest suspects. What did change was the defendant’s perception of the role of the police.

The defendant adopted a lifestyle that placed him in the spotlight as a suspect in any crime reported and under investigation. He was in the wrong place, with the wrong people at the wrong time.

Quite often, the defendants in a court case also feel that they are at war with the prosecutor. They are convinced that the state is taking the case against them personally. In this sense, the defendants are usually wrong and have the wrong perspective. Their wandering thinking pits the state against themselves in a kind of personal battle. While this is very real in the defendant’s mind, it is unimportant in real life.

Defendants also feel that judges and courts are at odds with them on a personal level. They certainly must be “out to get me.” These innermost feelings give most defendants the wrong perspective of the judicial process and the criminal justice system. Without the advice of a competent attorney, defendants often go astray when trying to navigate through the court process.

The real role of the police, the prosecution and the court

In reality, the police have a legal duty to arrest people whenever there is probable cause to believe that they might have committed a crime. The police cannot turn a blind eye. They cannot walk away and forget about the incident. Being under a legal duty means that the police cannot back down, but must arrest the suspect. They are obligated to control the suspect, take him to jail and book him for the crime of which he is accused.

The prosecutor’s job is to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the State’s case using witness testimony and actual or physical evidence. Crimes are divided into the elements of the crime. Each item must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecutor’s focus is to meet the State’s burden of proof.

The judge’s job is to provide a fair and honest forum for the trial of the charges. The judge rules on the admissibility of the evidence while the jury decides the credibility, reliability, and plausibility of the evidence. Is the witness trying to testify about what he heard someone else say? That is an argument that only the Judge can decide. Did the witness lie? That is an argument that should be directed to the Jury rather than the Judge.

The American dream allows us to change our behavior

Once arrested, the defendant often enters the court process overcome with shame, frustration, and anger. Left unchecked, these emotions will continue to fester until they destroy that person. Instead of being overwhelmed with shame, frustration, and anger, the defendant must understand what is really going on inside the courtroom in order to properly cope with the process.

There is an old adage that goes: “If you want your life to change, you have to change!” When a person is accused of a crime, what he must do is take a good look at his life and his behavior. What are his innermost feelings about life and interaction with others? When a person becomes a defendant in the criminal justice system, their life, behavior, and beliefs may need to change radically. If so, then the only thing that can cause such a change is the person himself. Maybe it’s time for a makeover. Maybe it’s time to stop and start: stop the old behavior and start anew. The people of this country are always allowed to start over or pass a new sheet of paper on which to write the rest of their lives. That incredible miraculous ability is called the American Dream. To win at trial, it may need to be redone.

The judges of the Criminal Chamber of the Courts usually have 150 cases in their files in the morning. Some of those cases will get mercy, a second chance to help the defendant get back on track. Some of those cases will get the wrath of the Court for the horrible acts they committed without any remorse. Most cases receive the average treatment. The objective is that it is today’s case that receives special treatment and the full favor of the Judge.

Dressing for court is dressing for success.

During your many court appearances, watch as others come to court. You will see the lawyers who have well-groomed hair, dark suits, white shirts, ties and polished shoes. They stand up when they address the Judge. They speak politely, firmly, clearly and with good language. In fact, that is the best model he can follow, if he wants to be well accepted by the Court that has power over his future. There’s a time and a place for the casual look, but that’s just not acceptable on court!

DO:

  • Dress conservatively in clean business clothes;
  • Get a new haircut for Short;
  • Stand up and speak clearly and intelligently in response to the Judge’s questions;
  • Say “Yes, Your Honor” or “No, Your Honor”;
  • Be respectful – Be courteous – Be courteous;
  • Be on the lookout and ready for your case to be called;
  • Definitely turn off your cell phone and any other electronic devices;
  • Be on your best behavior at all times…you don’t know who’s watching you;
  • Take notes of any questions or comments you have for your lawyer.

WHOSE:

  • Don’t sleep in court!
  • Don’t interrupt the process by talking or laughing!
  • Don’t read a newspaper!
  • Do not make faces or gestures towards the Jury!
  • Don’t slouch in your meat!

Following these suggestions will pay big dividends for the outcome of your case. this is your case It is not the case of your lawyer or the case of your relative or the person who pays for your defense case. It is your case and only yours. You will either give yourself every chance to be victorious, or you will lose and head to a place where you wish you didn’t have to spend time. The choice is yours. Grow up, stand up and make the right decisions to achieve victory through proper behavior in the courtroom.

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