After a plea of no contest my son was sentenced to 5 years probation which specified 1 year jail term for “misconduct of a firearm”

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After a plea of no contest my son was sentenced to 5 years probation which specified 1 year jail term for “misconduct of a firearm”

Is there such a motion or law that will allow an attorney to file to reduce the sentence or change the sentence term due to financial hardship to his family because he was full time employed and doing well in another State? He also helped with the investigation and was told by the investigator at that time that by helping they will make sure that the court knows that he helped and it will work more in his favor.

Asked on May 2, 2009 under Criminal Law, Hawaii

Answers:

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

It is always possible to file a motion to reduce a sentence, but they are rarely successful.  Financial hardship is not a reason, usually, that is good enough to make filing a motion like that worth while.  After all, that is one of the predictable consequences of being convicted of a crime and sent to jail in the first place.  I can't tell you that succeeding with this is impossible, but it is a very, very long shot.

If your son was promised a lighter sentence for cooperating, and then the prosecutor didn't let the judge know that he had cooperated, that might be a better reason for the motion.  Unfortunately, those kinds of promises can be very hard to prove.  Without knowing a lot more about the case, it is very hard to say if your son's sentence is relatively light, for what he did, or not.

A criminal lawyer, in the state where your son was convicted, can give you a better idea of whether this is worth doing, after you give him or her all the facts of the case.  If you need to find a lawyer, you can do that at http://attorneypages.com


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