Alford Pleas and Sex Offense, Rape, Sex Crimes in Raleigh, Cary, Apex

What happens if you are facing many years in prison, but the DA has just offered you a plea deal that would mean a much reduced sentence, or even just probation. What happens if you are in fact innocent of the crime, but the risk of going to trial means you may spend the next 10 years or even the rest of your life in prison.

What happens if your conscience or your beliefs will not allow you to stand up in court and admit guilt to something you didn’t do, but you just can’t risk going before a jury and being convicted?

The answer is the Alford Plea. An Alford plea is a plea in which the defendant does not admit to the crime, but is telling the court, “Look, the risk of going to trial is too much, and I can’t risk that to me or my family.”

Some Wake County judges do not accept Alford pleas. And the Wake County District Attorney must agree to the Alford Plea. But in some cases, Alford pleas are accepted. And since the case, North Carolina v. Alford, is a United States Supreme Court case that originated in North Carolina, North Carolina is one of those states that does accept Alford pleas.

Alford pleas can be a way for you to get a favorable plea agreement, or avoid very bad consequences if you lose at trial, without having to admit guilt for something you did not do. You still will face the consequences, whether it’s some jail time, or probation or fines. But you will avoid having to admit in court to something you did not do.

Damon Chetson

Damon Chetson is a Board Certified Specialist in State and Federal Criminal Law. He represents people charged with serious and minor offenses in Raleigh, Wake County, and the Eastern District of North Carolina. Call (919) 352-9411.