Capital cases are very serious. In some cases the punishment for a capital case can be death. If not death, the mandatory penalty upon conviction is life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. In either case the penalties and the cases themselves are very serious in nature and are handled by our most experienced attorneys to ensure the best representation possible.
The Capital Division of the Public Defender’s office handles first degree murder cases that are punishable by death or mandatory life. These cases are also referred to as “death penalty” cases. These are the most serious of all offenses in the criminal justice system. Even if a person is not sentenced to death, a person convicted of first degree murder upon conviction must be punished to life imprisonment.
Capital cases can also include certain types of sexual battery involving child victims. However, these cases are not punishable by death anymore. However, the offender, if convicted, must be punished to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
Capital cases are handled in the Circuit court. In general, the cases are assigned by last name to the appropriate division. However, in some cases a special judge may be assigned to handle the case.