As a public defender, I was representing a scumbag client who was a massive drug addict who got high and beat the hell out of her eight year old daughter with a belt after she accidentally broke mommy’s drug pipe.
She was charged with child cruelty and possession of meth, and, given her criminal record, the DA’s plea offer was three years of prison. Needless to say, my client didn’t want to go to prison for “giving her daughter what she deserved” and started freaking out at me when I told her that’s the best offer I was going to get from the DA, and it was either accept that offer or go to trial. I further pointed out the mountain of evidence against her, primarily: the photographs of her daughter’s injuries, the bloody belt that was recovered from her bedroom, the broken meth pipe w/ meth residue in it, and the fact that her daughter was going to testify against her at trial.
After she was done cursing me out, calling me a “public pretender,” and every other derogatory name she could think of, she fired me and somehow managed to hire a private attorney for the low price of $8,000 (I still don’t know how she managed to come up with that, but I have plenty of reliable guesses). The private attorney “guaranteed” her that he could win her case at trial, and that’s exactly what she chose to do.
Long story short, the private attorney clearly never even read this woman’s file before trial. The trial lasted roughly three hours, the jury was literally out for only five minutes, and the judge sentenced her to ten years of prison.
It was a good day.