Smith Johnson Law PLLC - Criminal Defense Lawyer in Florida - bizTrailblazer

Inside Smith Johnson Law PLLC [Florida’s Trusted Defense Firm] – A Chat with Criminal Defense Expert

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Alexander J. Smith-Johnson’s journey to becoming a criminal defense attorney in Florida was guided by a deep-seated passion for advocacy and a natural talent for persuasive speaking, skills he has cultivated since childhood. Inspired by a college professor’s suggestion, Alexander embarked on a journey that has spanned over a decade, navigating Florida’s evolving legal landscape with a focus on achieving justice.

At Smith Johnson Law PLLC, Alexander distinguishes his practice with a personalized approach centered on client care and effective communication. With a keen understanding of the complexities within the criminal justice system, Alexander remains committed to providing unwavering support and strategic defense for each client, ensuring their rights are protected in every case.

In a recent interview with BizTrailblazer, Alexander shared insights into his journey and the intricacies of being a criminal defense attorney in Florida. Here’s what he had to say.

Q. Can you tell us about your journey and what inspired you to become a criminal defense attorney in Florida?

Ans: What inspired me to be a criminal defense attorney was a belief that I could use my love of speaking and persuasion to help others who may not be able to help themselves. As a child, I had a love for words and vocabulary. One day in college, after a presentation, a professor explained that I might want to consider law as a profession as I seemed astute at quick thinking and had a presence when I spoke.  The seed was planted from there, and the rest fell into place.

Q. What are the most common misconceptions people have about the criminal justice system in Florida, and how do you address them in your practice?

Ans: One of the biggest misconceptions in Florida Criminal Justice may be that people think that they do not need lawyers or that lawyers are out to take advantage, etc. I believe there is no criminal matter in Florida where it is wise to represent yourself and forego the aid of an attorney. However, I understand and empathize with the fact that many times the client-attorney relationship may not be perfect.  I address this with my clients by being available, maintaining open communication, and always rendering the truth to my clients in every situation.

Q. Florida’s legal landscape can be complex. What key elements should individuals consider when selecting the right criminal defense attorney?

Ans: When selecting the right criminal attorney, I would say use your common sense. You know when you feel comfortable and when you feel heard. Moreover, you as a client know when you get a good feeling about meeting a person, and I would use that as an initial measure in making that decision.

Q. With over a decade of experience in Florida’s Criminal Judicial System, what are the most significant changes or trends you’ve observed in criminal law during your career?

Ans: One of the most significant trends I have seen recently is that punishment is increasing and becoming harsher on certain crimes, including violent offenses, sexual offenses, and offenses against minors. Florida seems to be taking a harder stance on punishing these types of crimes.

Q. Could you share an example of a particularly challenging or high-profile case you’ve handled and the strategies you used to achieve a successful outcome?

Ans: One of the most difficult matters I handled was a double kidnapping and robbery in which my client gave a full confession, and I was still able to get him acquitted. I attacked the basis of the confession and how it came about, addressed the multiple mistruths his co-defendant had told, and got the job done that way.

Q. What sets Smith Johnson Law PLLC apart from other law firms in Florida when it comes to criminal defense?

Ans: What sets Smith-Johnson Law apart from other criminal defense firms is the passion and care I take with these clients and cases. I will go that extra mile and a few more after that to get the job done. I have spent years perfecting my dress, speech, and presentation and there is no other lawyer doing it all like I am, and I sincerely believe that.

Q. In your experience, what are some of the critical steps an individual should take when they’re accused of a crime in Florida, from the moment they’re charged to the resolution of their case?

Ans: Key steps in your case are all at the outset of your legal matter. First, have bond money to free yourself if arrested. Second, retain a lawyer asap as early as you can. Try not to make any incriminating statements to law enforcement, and always exercise your constitutional rights.

Q. Could you explain the process of expungement and sealing in Florida and the potential benefits it offers to those with a criminal record?

Ans: Sealing and expungements are an opportunity to limit and or erase a criminal matter. You cannot be adjudicated of the offense and must have completed all terms within the disposition so that the case is completely closed. Once you have done that and your offense is eligible for sealing and or expunging, you must gain state attorney approval and certification from FDLE.  Upon receipt of certification, you may motion to the trial Judge for sealing and or expunging.

Q. What impact has your involvement in the legal community had on your practice and your ability to serve your clients effectively?

Ans: The experience I have gained in criminal law over the last nine years has helped me start my own criminal defense firm. My many years of service to this facet of law have helped me thoroughly understand my clients and communicate with them in a sound and effective way. Having a service-based mentality has always helped me deal with my clients as I aim to meet their needs.

Q. Can you provide insight into the importance of client-attorney relationships and how they contribute to the success of a case?

Ans: An attorney-client relationship is a very important undertaking and must be managed carefully. I find that an open line of communication and honesty are always welcomed by both parties involved. Not only this but managing expectations is also key to this relationship regarding criminal law.  Both parties must understand and accept the facts of the case and the best options available considering those facts.

Q. Looking ahead, what do you envision for the future of criminal defense in Florida, and how are you and your firm prepared to adapt to these changes?

Ans: The future of criminal defense in Florida is hard to envision as we are still dealing with today’s imperfections. I hope that whatever the future holds, at its core, is true justice and an equal application of the law to all cases and persons. I hope that the law will continue to correct our wrongs, but I also seek to rehabilitate those capable and willing to live under the law of our Great State.

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