How close to trial is a plea bargain typically reached?

UPDATED: Apr 20, 2011

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How close to trial is a plea bargain typically reached?

My sister’s trial is set for next week. Her attorney says that they are working out a plea bargain-which is what my sister prefers (she is currently in prison). He called last week to tell me they are working on a bargain that will hopefully go through. I am worried though, because we have not heard from him again. He asked that I not share what he told me with anyone in the family, he doesn’t want anyone calling the prosecutor and saying anything that would negatively impact the deal. Is it normal to be this close to trial without a plea? OK if I call the prosecutor or is it bad to?

Asked on April 20, 2011 under Criminal Law, Texas


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Listen, I would give her attorney time to deal with the matter and PLEASE do not contact the Prosecutor on your sister's behalf unless her attorney asks you to do so.  Do I think that this is a little too close to trial to obtain a plea deal for your sister?  No, I do not.  There could be many reasons that a deal was not struck until the 11th hour as they say. Maybe there was an offer and her attorney did not really like it or thought that it was not the best offer for her and wanted to work on he Prosecutor some more.  Maybe the Prosecutor had trouble securing an ok for a deal until now (some deals must be approved through the ranks).  Who knows why.  But give her attorney some breathing room and then see where it goes.  Good luck. 

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