Photo Of Kyle B. Sawyer
Photo Of Kyle B. Sawyer

Charged With A Crime? It Doesn’t Mean You’re Guilty.

Why You Need a Jury Trial in Denver, Colorado

On Behalf of | Dec 24, 2011 | Courts |

Why You Need a Jury Trial in Denver, Colorado is simple: it will increase the chances of winning your criminal case at court. There are many practical reasons your chance of success at trial increases with a jury.

Judges are Real People

You must consider who we are as people in order to understand this jury issue. We like people we work with every day and like them to like us. Throughout Colorado counties, like Adams, Arapahoe, Jefferson, Douglas and Denver County, judges (people) want to be liked by their coworkers. These judges work with the District Attorney employees in courts on a daily basis. I recently had a hearing in a Sexual Assault on a Child case where a judge recognized and waved to a police officer (who smiled) in the back of the courtroom. Whether it is the victim’s advocate, police officers or the deputy district attorney, judges see them every day in the halls, cafeterias, and during breaks in the courtroom. They have a relationship with these government coworkers.

Judges Think About the Retention Vote

Also important, judges are retained by vote in Colorado. The District Attorney’s office supposedly represents the “People of the State of Colorado”. These are the very “People” who decide whether the judge is retained or not. Judges’ jobs are in peril if the District Attorney’s office recommends they not be retained. The result? Judges know that if they make the District Attorney’s office upset too often, their reputation will be more defense oriented and they will be opposed by the DA at retention vote time.

A Colorado Jury has No Bias

A jury trial in Aurora, Arvada, Golden or Lakewood means your guilt or innocence is decided by someone who has never met the deputy district attorney or their victim’s advocate. There is no bias in favor of the government. Plus, juries are real world people. Unlike judges, they get out to real world places like bars, the grocery store, and Wal-Mart, where many of our cases originate. Judges don’t hang out with the unemployed, neighbors who park cars in the front lawn, and ex-spouses who will lie about anything to win a child custody case. They are insulated from the stresses most people face. As a result of this isolation, judges don’t appreciate real world motives to lie, real world influences, and real world bias.

The “beyond a reasonable doubt” burden of proof is on the government in criminal trials. As a defense attorney, I find that juries take this burden seriously and require the government to meet this burden before voting guilty. When we win trials, deputy district attorneys seem genuinely astonished that we won. They see their cases through the mindset that a judge will be deciding guilt or innocence. After seeing many judge rulings on legal issues, I believe judges are conditioned to vote guilty on criminal cases on an easier burden of proof standard.

If you need a jury trial, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and call us today at 303-731-0719.  Together, we can protect your future.