If you are accused of criminal activity, you can expect to spend time in the courtroom. You are required to act a certain way in court, and not in a way you would see in movies or on television. Your goal should be to remain respectful and on your best behavior during your time in court. The following are some things you should know about when you should or should not talk in court:
During Your Plea
One time when you can speak in court is when you enter a plea. You will discuss this with your attorney before entering court so you know exactly what to say. When the judge asks you how you intend to plea, you should say either guilty or not guilty, based on what you and your attorney discussed. Do not say anything else or try to make your own case right then and there. Doing so can result in your removal and a contempt of court charge.
If your attorney decides to put you on the witness stand, you will have to speak at that time. You will encounter questions from your attorney and from the prosecuting attorney. Your attorney will work with you on how to answer the questions using short, concise answers. Do not show any anger or strong emotions during your testimony, as it can hurt your case.
During Your Address to the Court
If you are found guilty, you will have the chance to address the court at the time of sentencing. You can read a statement, which is the best option so you stay on track. You can also speak without a statement, but you should have an outline of what you plan to say. At this time, you can request a lighter sentence. You should speak respectfully and not in an angry tone.
During Victim Impact Statements
At the time of your sentencing, the victims will have the opportunity to speak to you and the court. You also have the chance to speak to the victim or their family. You should prepare a statement before to read out loud. You could also have your attorney read your statement if you cannot do so yourself.
You need to observe proper decorum while in court. You should say as little as possible to about any outbursts or making statements which can be misconstrued as guilt. Work closely with your attorney to learn how to act in court. For more information, contact a company like Kalasnik Law Office today.