The Law Office of Zachary Margulis-Ohnuma is open for business assisting criminal defendants in New York's state and federal courts. If you need a criminal defense lawyer, call us at 212 685-0999.

Do You Need a Sentencing Video?

As the New York Times reported yesterday, criminal lawyers are increasingly offering short biographical videos at sentencing to help judges understand their clients better. While we almost always submit detailed sentencing packages for our clients, in some cases a sentencing video can help humanize a client in a way that a letter or memo just can’t. Family members might find it difficult to write a useful letter about their loved one, but come alive speaking about him on camera. A sentencing video includes photographs, interviews with friends and family, and sometimes old footage of the defendant or places he has been. It tells the client’s story. Some judges are receptive to sentencing videos, others give you the feeling that it does not make a difference. But in all cases, the main thing the sentencing judge knows about the defendant is the bad thing the government claims he did; a sentencing video can reveal the other side, showing the court who the person really is.

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