The United States of America has a criminal justice system that is admired around the world. The right to remain silent, the presumption of innocence, the standard of proof "beyond a reasonable doubt," all derive from the deeply held belief that the awesome power of the State should only impair a person's liberty if guilt is almost absolutely certain. The principal that we would rather let ten guilty people go free than imprison one innocent person informs our entire system. We value liberty, freedom and the unity derived when people are afforded both. Vermont's Superior Court Criminal Division can only enter a criminal conviction if a defendant pleads guilty or no contest, or after a unanimous jury verdict of 12 citizens. The right to a jury trial guarantees criminal defendants in Vermont the ability to obtain a vigorous defense. A skilled criminal defense attorney will help you reach the best plea deal possible, or litigate your case to a jury trial, while consulting with you regarding all of your options.

Traffic tickets are usually issued as civil violation complaints, which must be denied and returned in the envelope provided within 20 days.  Sometimes, a speeding violation is treated as a criminal "excessive speed" or "negligent operation" charge.  If you are charged with a civil violation complaint, it is imperative that you mark "denied" on the back of the ticket and return it within 20 days in the envelope provided.  If you are given a criminal citation for a speeding violation, you must attend your arraignment, or make arrangements to waive your appearance and have an attorney appear on your behalf.  Civil violations often carry points, or are treated as negative marks on your driving record from an insurance standpoint, and often result in higher insurance premiums, and sometimes interfere with an individual's ability to rent a car.  Criminal citations can result in a suspended license and significant insurance and other collateral consequences. Regardless of whether you are charged civilly or criminally, you need an experienced and aggressive attorney to ensure you obtain the best result possible under the circumstances of your case.