Mitigation tells the story of a defendant’s life, putting the alleged crime in the context of medical, mental, educational, and family history.
Defendants are often not the best narrator of their own story – that’s especially true with clients who struggle with drug addiction or mental illness. Jury & Webb Mitigation begins with interviewing the person accused to gather information and build a relationship, and then we expand to family and others who have relevant evidence. In every case, we look at the following: family history, medical records, psychiatric history, educational level, economic status, employment history, and cultural background of the client and client’s caregivers. We create a timeline of the client’s life that illuminates the impact of these factors with sources cited and provided as exhibits.
A person’s life history does not offer excuses for committing crime. But a person’s life history does provide reasons and context for the commission of the crime, and it gives the judges, juries, and prosecutors the data necessary to make an informed, rational sentence or charging document.
Each of us is more than our mistakes and worst acts, but criminal defendants are the only ones whose value is judged solely by a police report and a criminal record. Mitigation simply enables the courts to judge citizens for who they are and what they have done.