Avvo badge
Top 100 Badge
Orange County Bar Association

Will Bruzzo’s Blog

The Role of Plea Bargaining in Orange County Criminal Cases

Plea bargaining is a standard part of the American criminal justice system. Generally, it refers to the negotiations and settlements between a prosecutor and the defendant’s criminal defense attorney as a means to resolve a case. Usually, the defendant agrees to plead guilty to a lesser charge or a reduced sentence in exchange for a preferable outcome. 

In Orange County, California, plea bargaining is a common and necessary aspect of the criminal justice process, and it’s essential to understand the basics. Our Orange County criminal defense lawyer at the Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo explains more on how plea bargaining in California criminal cases works below.

How Does it Work?

Plea bargaining is usually about risk and the facts of a particular case. Accepting one of these agreements is a way for the defendant to avoid the risks of going to trial. In a trial, the defendant may face a more severe sentence if found guilty, and there is no guarantee that the jury will rule in their favor. In a plea bargain, the defendant and their criminal defense lawyer can negotiate with the prosecution to reach an agreement on a more favorable sentence. 

Once that settlement is reached, it must still be presented to the judge for approval. A judge has discretion here, and if they accept the plea bargain, the defendant will plead guilty to the reduced charge and receive the agreed-upon sentence.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Plea Bargaining

The main advantage of plea bargaining is that it offers a quicker resolution to a case, which can benefit both the defendant and the prosecution. The defendant avoids the risks of going to trial and receives a more favorable sentence, while the prosecution saves time and resources by not having to go to trial. 

However, plea bargaining also has its disadvantages. The defendant must often admit guilt to the reduced charge, which can have long-term consequences. Additionally, the defendant may be giving up their right to a trial and their chance to prove their innocence.

Should You Consider Plea Bargaining in Your Case?

Whether or not plea bargaining is the right option for your case depends on several factors. It is essential to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney to understand the potential consequences of pleading guilty to a reduced charge. A legal professional can help you weigh the pros and cons of plea bargaining and make an informed decision about what is best for your case.

It is important to remember that every criminal case is different, and the outcome of a case will depend on the specific circumstances. It’s impossible to know all of your options and the realistic plea bargaining options before speaking to an attorney familiar with local courts. Your lawyer will know how your record, the facts of the case, and other variables might lead toward an agreement or against it. 

Get Legal Help

An Orange County, California, criminal defense lawyer can provide more tailored advice based on your specific situation. Whether or not plea bargaining is the right option for you depends on several factors, and it is wise to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney to make an informed decision.

Our knowledgeable attorney at the Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo can provide guidance and support throughout the plea bargaining process and help you achieve the best outcome for your case.

How to Defend Yourself Against a Positive Urinalysis in the Military
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

A positive drug test when you are in the military is not a minor issue to be taken lightly. When you take a urine drug test as a military member that yields a positive result, you are putting your military career on the line. However, a positive urine drug test does not mean that you…

Continue reading ›
What is a Civil Harassment Restraining Order?
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

A restraining order is a protective action that is meant to stop and prevent harassment, threats, or violence by one party against another. There are five types of restraining orders, with a civil harassment restraining order being one of them. Restraining orders can be temporary, or they can be permanent. While a restraining order is…

Continue reading ›
Should You Fight DUI Charges in California or Plead Guilty?
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

After an arrest for any charge, there is always a critical decision that must be made. Do you plead guilty and accept the consequences, or do you take the chance and fight your charges? This is true for all criminal arrests, including DUI arrests. It may seem like, in the grand scheme of things, concerning…

Continue reading ›
Top 7 Reasons Why You Should Hire a DUI Attorney 
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

If you were pulled over by a California police officer who suspected you were driving drunk and then ultimately arrested you, this is obviously not a situation you want to be in. You may feel scared, anxious, or unsure. You may even feel bewildered, especially if you know you are not guilty of drunk driving. …

Continue reading ›
When Can You Appeal a Court Decision in California?
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

You have been charged with a crime, you go to court, and a decision is made. You are found to be guilty by a jury of your peers. This scenario happens all too often but is nevertheless a hit to the gut that can take your breath away. Depending on the charges that you were…

Continue reading ›
Pros and Cons of Accepting or Rejecting Article 15
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

Receiving Article 15 is not ideal in any way. Military personnel who are believed to have committed a minor crime -akin to a misdemeanor offense in a civilian proceeding- may be issued an Article 15. Defined as a commanding officer’s non-judicial punishment, there are several consequences that could happen. You may suffer a reduction in…

Continue reading ›
Hit and Run Offenses in California
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

Hit-and-run offenses in California involve a driver’s failure to stop and provide required information after being involved in a motor vehicle collision. The California Vehicle Code (CVC) distinguishes between two main types of hit-and-run offenses: misdemeanor hit-and-run and felony hit-and-run. If you are being accused of causing a hit-and-run accident, it is imperative that you…

Continue reading ›
Criminal Defendants’ Rights in California
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

Being charged with a crime can be a life-altering experience. However, as a defendant in California, you have certain fundamental rights that are designed to safeguard your interests and ensure a fair legal process. The California criminal defense attorney at The Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo discusses your rights as a criminal defendant below.…

Continue reading ›
Underage Drinking in California: The Consequences and How to Avoid Them
Law Offices of William W. Bruzzo

Underage drinking is a serious problem in California. In fact, according to the California Department of Public Health, one in five high school students in the state has been drunk in the past month. There are many different reasons why underage people drink. Some do it because they think it makes them cool. Others do…

Continue reading ›

Client Reviews

“I was pulled over for not having license plates on my car. The reason for that was because it was new. When the Officer pulled me over, he claims to have smelled marijuana and he began to ask me questions. I admitted to smoking marijuana earlier in the...


“I was arrested and charged with Penal Code Section 273.5(a) [Domestic Violence with Traumatic Injury]. Unfortunately, some of my actions were caught on video. In addition, an infant was present during the incident. My family hired Attorney Will Bruzzo to...


“I was charged with two counts of Vehicle Code 23109.1 [Engaging in a Speed Contest Causing Specified Injury] as a felony; two counts of Vehicle Code 23105(a) [Reckless Driving Causing Specified Injury], one count of Penal Code Section 368(b)(1) [Elder and...


Get in Touch

Fill out the contact form or call us at (714) 547-4636 to schedule your free consultation.
  • phone.png Free Consultation
  • availabilty.png Available 24/7
  • x3C_Layer_x3E__copia.png Se Habla Español

Leave Us a Message