2 Things to Know About Appeals After a Plea Bargain
If you face a criminal charge in Arizona, the unknown is probably the scariest thing you are up against. You do not know if the court will find you guilty, and if it does, then you do not know what your sentence may be. You can speculate, but nothing is certain. That is why a plea bargain may seem like the best deal possible.
With a plea bargain, you know what will happen. You know the charges the court will find you guilty of and what the sentence will be. Of course, the judge has the last say, but he or she will usually follow the deal made in the plea bargain. However, what happens if after you take the deal, you decide it was not so great? You could appeal.
Here are two things to keep in mind about appealing a plea bargain:
1. A broad sentencing appeal waiver could be bad
According to the United States Department of Justice, when you agree to a plea bargain, you may agree to a broad sentencing waiver. This means that you agree to lose your right to appeal the sentence imposed by the agreement. If this is part of your plea bargain, then you cannot appeal the sentence.
2. You waive some but not all rights in a plea bargain
While you may waive your right to appeal the sentence, you still have some right intact that the prosecution cannot force you to give up in the agreement. This includes your right to appeal if you feel you had inadequate counsel or the right to appeal if you feel discrimination was involved in your case.
It is possible to appeal your plea bargain, but not in every situation. The chances are good that the prosecutor included a waiver of your rights to appeal your sentence. So, even if you feel the sentence is not fair or does not follow sentencing guidelines, you may not be able to appeal on those grounds.