Dagger Law Criminal and Juvenile Defense Attorneys bring top-shelf legal experience to defend our clients’ rights and freedoms.
We can assist with any issues arising from the following legal matters:
- Criminal charges
- Criminal investigations
- Trial defense
- Post-release issues involving probation, parole, or community control
Don’t see your particular issue listed above? That is no problem! We enjoy a challenge and are happy to assist you with the legal issue that you are facing. Use our convenient Contact Page to schedule an appointment to discuss your legal matter with an attorney.
A good criminal defense lawyer is the best way to limit, or eliminate, the harmful consequences from a run-in with the criminal justice system.
When arrested, you should be read your Miranda Rights which includes the right to an attorney. This isn’t just a thing cops have to say, but it is a reminder that you still have rights despite the way that things look and feel when you are under arrest or caught up in a criminal investigation. While there may be a million things going on around you, such as police officers asking you questions, lights on a cruiser flashing in your eyes, perhaps someone is screaming or crying, and you are likely shaking your head and wondering how all of this happened. The first thing you should do is call an experienced criminal defense lawyer. This simple act can often provide the time needed to slow down the criminal justice process and help you think straight before you say something that will be held against you in the courtroom later on. Whether you choose to fight for your rights in trial or plead guilty, you need a criminal defense attorney that can help you get the most favorable outcomes for your situation.
Dagger Law recommends the following steps in choosing the best criminal defense lawyer for you:
- Find the criminal law attorney who listens to you, who communicates your options, and who you are willing to work with. While the court will appoint an attorney to you, that is a little like having the court appoint your spouse. It might take a little extra time and money, but it will be worth picking someone you want to be with.
- Choose a criminal defense lawyer with the right experience for your case. A criminal attorney may have had dozens of drug offense cases, but never handled a domestic violence case in a trial before. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about the attorney’s prior experience.
- Know whether your criminal defense attorney has a team behind them. If it is your day to be in court, and your attorney gets sick, who will be attending the trial in their place? If they practice alone, will you need to sit in jail for another week while your case is continued so that your attorney can get healthy? At Dagger Law, our team of experienced attorneys and staff help keep your case moving forward as scheduled.
- Be a skeptic. When you are facing legal charges, you don’t want to go with the lawyer who makes promises. Sure, you want someone who is fighting for your rights but the legal system is complex and your attorney will never fully have control over a judge or jury. You want someone who knows how to work towards positive outcomes for your criminal case, but nobody can promise a particular result.
While you have the right to represent yourself, we would never recommend this course of action. Regardless of your intellect, your understanding of the facts in your criminal law case, and your belief in your ability, the legal world is complex and specific. Criminal defense lawyers are trained on the specific processes and procedures of the court, and spending money to retain an experienced attorney is always a wise investment.
Whether you are innocent and charged with a crime, or you had a momentary lapse in judgment that resulted in your arrest, you should expect your criminal defense attorney to help you navigate the legal system towards the best outcome for you. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can provide legal counsel for:
- Negotiating a favorable plea bargain. This includes providing a “reality check” regarding whether a prosecutor’s plea agreement is reasonable or a “good deal.” Remember that part of what you pay for is an attorney’s experience. If your attorney has seen hundreds of cases end one way, but your cousin thinks it should end a different way, you should listen to your attorney. Refusing the good advice of your attorney puts your freedom and liberty at risk.
- Recommending a sentencing program that reduces the likelihood that you will end up back in the criminal justice system again. Ultimately, that is our goal at Dagger Law.
- Preparing you for trial, and ensuring that you are aware of the role that you will play in your own defense. Sometimes the best thing you can do is not talk, but you should understand why that is the case! Our attorneys will take the time to explain the legal process to you.
Juvenile offenses are a unique area of practice and are best handled by an experienced juvenile defense attorney.
That may sound obvious, but many people take for granted that a juvenile offense and an adult criminal offense are the same. After all, many of the actions may be the same but are held accountable under a different set of rules. Everything from traffic offenses, drug offenses, and theft will be handled through juvenile court for those under the age of 18, in the state of Ohio. In some instances, an individual under the age of 18, when the offense was committed, can be tried as an adult in a process called juvenile bind-over.
It is important that attorneys have specific experience dealing with the juvenile court system so that they understand the differences in how cases are handled for juvenile offenders.
We proudly serve the following communities throughout Central and Southeastern Ohio:
- Fairfield County
- Franklin County
- Hocking County
- Licking County
- Pickaway County
- Baltimore, Ohio
- Buckeye Lake
- Canal Winchester
- Greater Columbus Area
- Lancaster, Ohio
- Newark, Ohio
- other locations nearby
Check out the nearest location to you by clicking Our Locations Page
Q: I wanted to retain your services, but I was told that there was a conflict of interest. What does that mean?
A: In Ohio law, an attorney has a duty to provide effective counsel to a client. To be clear, “effective” doesn’t mean that the client gets the outcome that they desire, but rather it indicates that the legal representation was competent. In a case where an attorney has represented an opposing party, at any time in the past or with the intent to represent an opposing party in the future, there can be considered to be a conflict of interest that creates a serious risk that a lawyer’s action on behalf of one party may have an impact on representation for another party. This is why an attorney cannot represent both spouses in a divorce. While there are some grey areas, most attorneys will wisely steer away from even a hint of engaging in a conflict of interest. After all, it is easier to avoid it than to argue that there was no conflict.
Q: Does hiring the best attorney mean that I will pay more?
A: Terms like “best attorney” are subjective. How would anyone judge that? Is there a contest for lawyers? To us, getting the best criminal attorney is the one who can do the job effectively and efficiently. This saves you both time and money. Nobody wants to be stuck living through legal matters for over six months, let alone years. While the client controls a lot of this, your lawyer plays a role as well. Experience can allow an attorney to quickly move past the research and planning phase into taking action for your legal issue. At Dagger Law, we pride ourselves on working as a legal team. This means that your assigned criminal defense attorney has access to all the legal knowledge and experience of every lawyer at our firm, and that is a valuable benefit for our clients.
Q: Why do you ask for a retainer?
A: Retainer fees are collected so that our attorneys have an operating fund with which to represent you. Some legal proceedings can take a long time, and we don’t want to drag out that process by waiting for money to pay for some basic expenses associated with almost any legal case. Whether this money is used to cover filing fees, pay for an attorney to write motions on your behalf, or even cover the cost of complex legal research, you will be presented with an itemized account of how that retainer is spent. We believe in being good stewards of your resources, and keep records of how we spend our time on your family law issue so that you can be confident that your money is being used wisely. While it doesn’t happen often if your case can be completed without using all of your retainer fees we will issue a refund for the unused portion. It is more usual that divorce cases cost more than the original retainer. If this is the case you may be asked to pay an additional retainer, or we will provide you with a billing statement on a month to month basis.
Q: Will a criminal defense attorney travel to me, or do I need to come to your offices in either Lancaster or Canal Winchester?
A: While some meetings will need to occur in our offices, we try to minimize your travel time. We offer two convenient office locations in Lancaster and Canal Winchester, Ohio. Our goal is to reduce the disruption to your life caused by legal issues and conduct most communications or meetings through emails or phone calls. In certain circumstances, we realize that clients can’t reach us, and we may be required to visit your location. Suppose you retain a Dagger Law attorney to represent you. In that case, they will travel to the necessary court hearings and legal procedures to represent you anywhere in Ohio! Please note that in some instances, the cost to represent your case may require an unusual amount of money due to travel expenses. In such cases, we may recommend using legal representation closer to the location of your case. We are happy to provide referrals in these instances if we are able.
Q: Why is it important to retain a local criminal defense attorney? Shouldn’t I hire the high price lawyer from some big city?
A: The lawyers at Dagger Law have built strong professional relationships within the legal community in Fairfield County, Licking County, Hocking County, Franklin County, Perry County, Vinton County, Athens County and many others. Those relationships start with integrity, mutual understanding, and the desire to seek the best outcomes for all involved. Some criminal attorneys assume that they can bully and bluff their way through the legal process, but we have found that this behavior isn’t in the best interests of our clients. Only by working with local attorneys, who have experience in the courtroom with the judges, magistrates, and prosecutors, are you able to find these relationships. This is also why we may refer cases out to other attorneys at times, because we know the value of strong, local, relationships.
How can I check the status of my Criminal or Juvenile case?
First, and foremost, we encourage you to communicate with your attorney, and their support staff, for updates regarding your particular matter. This will provide you with the most recent and up to date information. Communicating frequently with your attorney will allow you to ask questions so that you understand the progress of your case, as well as provide opportunities to give them any new information that your attorney might need to know. If your question is about the status of filing or other basic information, you can access self-service links located here: