Columbia Criminal Defense Lawyer

Columbia Criminal Defense Lawyer

Columbia Criminal Defense Attorney

If you are facing criminal charges, you have reason to be concerned about your future. What evidence does the prosecution have against you? How long has law enforcement been looking at you? Will you have a preliminary hearing? If so, what does that entail? What are the penalties associated with the charges that have been filed against you? These, and the hundreds of other questions that are racing through your mind, can be answered by the knowledgeable Columbia criminal lawyers at the Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, PA.

When You Need Criminal Defense Help Now

If you have been charged with a crime, there is no time to wait. Contacting your experienced Columbia, MD, legal team at the Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, PA, is the first, and most important step you should take. We have a team dedicated to defending specific crimes, so you can be confident that when we represent you, we are focused on the issues specific to your case. You can count on a thorough investigation of the facts, including an in depth look at the circumstances of your arrest and whether your constitutional rights have been protected throughout the process. We will examine documents, interview witnesses, and pursue every possible avenue as we construct a defense strategy. Our proficient Columbia defense attorneys will vigorously work on your behalf on a number of issues, including:

What Is a Criminal Defense Attorney?

A criminal defense lawyer is an attorney who represents people facing criminal charges. They play a crucial role in the legal system by protecting the legal rights of criminal defendants and ensuring that there is a balance within the justice system. Their main intent should be to represent their clients well, and the work required to do this is not limited to the courtroom. The work done by the attorney to prepare for the case determines the outcome of many cases. This work can include, but is certainly not limited to:

  • Independently investigate the incident to gain a thorough understanding of the case.
  • Complete all relevant legal research to ensure the charges are supported by the facts of the case, then argue for the reduction or dismissal of any charges that are not supported.
  • Craft a case strategy that improves the odds of the best possible outcome for the client.
  • Interview and prepare any witnesses for the trial.
  • File motions in court.
  • Negotiate with prosecutors for reduced sentences or plea bargains.
  • Counsel and advise clients.

The work that a criminal defense attorney puts into your case will likely be directly responsible for the outcome of your case. Therefore, it is important to find an attorney who is ready and willing to put in the necessary time to build your defense. These attorneys must also have full knowledge of criminal law and procedure to ensure that everyone follows the proper procedures.

Your Rights as a Criminal Defendant

Although you have been arrested on suspicion of a crime, you still have constitutional rights that must be preserved. The Fifth Amendment guarantees certain rights for anyone who is accused of a crime. These are more commonly known as the Miranda rights:

  • The right to remain silent
  • The right to an attorney
  • The right to a court-appointed defense counsel if you cannot afford to hire an attorney

You also have a Sixth Amendment right to be represented by an attorney during every stage of the case. The importance of a criminal defense attorney cannot be overstated, as they are the buffer between you and the complex judicial system—your rights reflect this fact. Your attorney will be a valuable source of information and advice while ensuring that your rights are protected.

Etiquette When Arrested in Howard County

Although you do have rights during an arrest, there are still actions to take that will help the situation. Getting arrested is no picnic. Being handcuffed, riding in the cage of a police vehicle, being fingerprinted, strip searched, and confined can be quite traumatic. Although you may be tempted to become resistant and/or belligerent, try to keep your cool and follow these tips:

  • Remain respectful, regardless of how you are being treated. In that vein, keep your paws to yourself. If you touch an officer, your problems can get exponentially worse.
  • Do not make an attempt to run for it.
  • If you have a weapon, or sharp objects (like needles) on your person, notify the officer prior to a search.
  • Ask for your lawyer before answering any questions beyond those necessary to process you.
  • Do not discuss the details of what happened with other detainees, friends, or family members. Save that conversation for your attorney.
  • Consider getting a family member, friend, or your attorney to call your employer if you are going to be missing work.

Private Defense Attorney vs. Public Defender

Although both private defense attorneys and public defenders are lawyers who could defend you from criminal charges, there are important differences between the two.

A private defense attorney, or criminal attorney, is someone hired by the defendant or their family. You choose the attorney that you hire, and you can fire them if necessary.

  • Advantages: Criminal attorneys control their caseloads and can ensure they dedicate the necessary time to each case. This means having sufficient time to communicate with their clients to discover all the facts of the case as well as prepare the client for all aspects of the hearings in advance. A private defense attorney will also have a team of associates and paralegals to help handle your case and create your defense strategy. Other professionals, like private investigators, expert witnesses, and private laboratories, can also be gathered by an attorney to build a better defense.
  • Disadvantages: Criminal attorneys dictate the clients they represent, so it may take a few phone calls or emails to locate a lawyer that has the time in their schedule to represent you. You will also be responsible for paying your attorney’s fees, which will include the fees of any experts hired to support your defense.

A public defender is appointed by the court for the defendant. However, not everyone will qualify for this service. If you cannot afford a private attorney, you may be eligible for a public defender. To prove your need, you will be required to submit a financial affidavit that explains your financial situation. Only those who are not employed are entitled to a public defender; having a job will exclude you from being able to use this service.

  • Advantages: Public defenders provide those without a job with a means to work with an attorney on their case. These lawyers work on many different types of cases, will be well versed in court operations, and may have positive relations with the prosecutors. These factors can help get your case resolved quickly.
  • Disadvantages: Public defenders often have full caseloads, meaning each defendant may only get minimal time with their attorney. It may be impossible to have a detailed discussion about the case. Their full caseload may also mean that the attorney is unable to look deeply into the case to create a strong legal defense. Public defenders are not privately hired, and their reputation is not completely at stake in the event of a mistake or error.

Although there are benefits to using public defenders, there is a clear advantage to using criminal defense attorneys instead. According to a study conducted by trial judge Morris B. Hoffman, defendants who hired a criminal defense attorney were not only less likely to go to jail than those who used a public defender, but any jail time they received was also likely to be shorter.

What to Look for in a Columbia MD Criminal Defense Attorney

Choosing a defense attorney for your case is not a decision to take lightly. It is vital to make an informed decision between the available options in your area. The following are considerations you can use to help determine the quality of an attorney:

  • Success Record and Experience: You want to choose an attorney who has experience with your specific charges and has had successful outcomes with those clients.
  • Knowledge of Local Procedures and Rules: Some procedures and rules will be different between different courts, and a lawyer cannot accurately represent a client without knowledge of them. An effective lawyer must know how to introduce evidence at trial, question witnesses on the stand, file paperwork before deadlines, etc.
  • Reputation Within the Legal Community: An attorney’s standing within the legal community can impact your case. Defense attorneys will frequently need to network with other attorneys. To do that, it is beneficial to have a good relationship with judges and prosecutors. Knowledge of their tactics and behaviors can help an attorney better advise you on how to proceed with your case.

Legal Assistance

Having a talented lawyer by your side to explain your options, advise you, and safeguard your interests can have a significant impact on your future. That is why, at the Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, PA, our emphasis is on protecting you, the client. For over 20 years, we have been dedicated to ensuring that our Columbia community is well-represented if anyone is facing criminal charges. Contact our Columbia criminal defense lawyers at 410-766-0113 to schedule a free, confidential consultation today.


Anne Arundel County

Empire Towers
7310 Ritchie Highway, Suite 910
Glen Burnie, MD 21061

Phone: 410-766-0113

Fax: 410-766-0270

Howard County On the grounds of Columbia Mall

30 Corporate Center
10440 Little Patuxent Parkway,
Suite 900
Columbia, MD 21044

Phone: 410-964-0050

Baltimore County (Arbutus/Catonsville)

Phone: 410-719-7377

Fax: 410-766-0270