January 22, 2009 By Wallin & Klarich

The Difference Between a Public Defender and a Privately Retained Attorney for Felony Matters


At Wallin and Klarich we receive calls from prospective clients all the time who are worried about the representation they are receiving from the public defender. We often tell people that while the public defenders try hard on their cases, that often they have a very high number of serious cases that they are trying to handle at the same time.

We tell people that it is often a better idea when they are facing the possibility of going to jail that they “invest” money in their freedom and hire an experienced southern California criminal defense law firm like Wallin and Klarich to help them.


An example of why we suggest that is what happened today in court when Wallin and Klarich were presenting one of three young men who were accused of stealing laptops from a local college bookstore. The other two defendants were represented by public defenders. The judge had offered 120 days in custody and a felony conviction for all three defendants. The two public California felony defense lawyers who were representing the other two young men appeared to be fine with the judge’s offer and said they would recommend it to their clients. However, this offer was totally unacceptable to Wallin and Klarich for our client.


Our client was a good young man who had been accepted to a good college on a scholarship. He was a student athlete and we were able to present to the judge many letters on our clients behalf. We informed the court that our client could not ruin his life with having a felony on his record. We told the judge that our client had been “punished by his parents” and was humiliated by the experience. He convinced the judge that our client should have his felony reduced to a misdemeanor. The judge agreed. However, Wallin and Klarich was not nearly done.


We then informed the court that having our client do 120 days in jail was not necessary in this case. We convinced the judge that a more appropriate sentence was to have our client do community work service and “give back” to the community where he lives.

Once again the judge agreed. Of course our client was extremely happy, and provided us with the testimonial you can read below.


What is just as important is that the two lawyers who were “court appointed lawyers” on the same case on behalf of the other two defendants wanted to speak to their clients about the offer on the case. They went outside and called out their names. The only problem is that their two clients were not in the hallway but were in custody. These public California theft defense lawyers did not even appear to know that their clients were in custody. We informed them so they could speak to their clients.


In our case our client was able to bail out soon after his arrest upon the advice of our law firm. The other two defendants did not receive similar advice. These two defendants served substantial jail sentences while our client received a misdemeanor. Our client will do community service and will do no jail time.


If you ever wonder whether it is often a very good idea to retain the services of a highly qualified criminal defense law firm read this story and you will have your answer.

You can reach Wallin and Klarich 24/7 to discuss your criminal case or can go to www.wklaw.com and chat live with one of our highly experienced lawyers and we can help you. Feel free to call us at 888.280.6839 anytime. We will be there when you call.

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