Firm News Blog

NY Times: Trial by Jury, A Hallowed American Right, is Vanishing

Today’s New York Times  article confirms our recent experience: whether due to lack of experience or inadequate preparation, most lawyers are afraid to challenge the government’s case in front of a jury. The end result is that their clients often end up accepting unfavorable plea bargains.

The Times piece quotes Former Judge John Gleeson, who stepped down from the federal bench, who observed that because most pleas are negotiated before a prosecutor prepares a case for trial, the “thin presentation” of evidence needed for indictment “is hardly ever subjected to closer scrutiny by prosecutors, defense counsel, judges or juries.” He was further quoted, “The entire system loses an edge and I have no doubt that the quality of justice in our courthouses has suffered as a result.”

At O’Connell and Aronowitz, our experienced trial attorneys Steve Coffey, Mike McDermott and Scott Iseman have proven track records of challenging the government and fighting for our clients’ rights in a court of law. If the prosecutor won’t agree to a favorable resolution to the charges pending against our clients, we don’t hesitate to take the fight to a jury.

Our renowned Criminal Defense team, who know their way around a courtroom, haven’t forgotten that many an “ironclad” case has melted in the crucible of trial.

“We are committed to going to trial when the facts warrant it and our record supports that,” says Steve Coffey.  “We understand that courtrooms are still where juries are and where our criminal justice should exist.”

Our Criminal Defense attorneys work in all our firm’s 5 offices and are available by calling our Albany office at (518) 462-5601.

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