The courts fuss and fume when you need an extra week or two to make a decision. They push you into whatever plea comes your way.
In Phoenix City Court, you usually spend the pretrial stages in front of a single judge. After you decide to fight it, though, they shuffle you elsewhere. The order says you’ll be going to trial in thirty days, but the court struggles to get you in front of a judge in sixty. You won’t know which judge you’ll get for fifty-nine.
When everyone assumed you’d plead, they rushed you to a decision. After they realized you were going to fight, they stretched it out as long as possible. It’s even a battle to get a judge to hold a motion hearing prior to trial.
Imagine you have one heck of a suppression issue. The cops obviously needed a warrant and didn’t get one, or they got one but it didn’t authorize what they did. It’s the awesome kind of issue defense attorneys crave, the kind of issue that makes motion drafting a true pleasure. I’d call it a slam dunk if it weren’t for the fact courts will do almost anything to avoid letting you “get away” with whatever some cop mistakenly thought you might have done.
No motion hearing for you! Not in Phoenix, at least. The motion hearing happens on the morning of trial while the jury waits below. There’s no pressure to deny the motion and give the jurors something to do, of course.
The court doesn’t care that you will have to pay thousands of dollars to retain an expert witness for trial in a case that should be dismissed based on well-settled law and undisputed facts. That’s your fault for putting yourself in a situation where you got yourself accused. The court doesn’t care that the state wouldn’t offer you a plea that conveyed some sort of discernible benefit. The blame again falls on you, the potentially innocent defendant who was unwilling to accept responsibility against your own self interest. The court doesn’t even care that this is a twenty-witness trial and there’s no time to hold an evidentiary hearing prior to trial. The judge will just yell at your defense lawyer when he asks for trial to continue into a second day.
You’re a beast of burden being pushed to your cruel fate. That’s the way the system works, and the idea is familiar…