You asked: "Should a public defender ever tell his client to take a plea deal because he has too many priors?"
Absolutely, the risk of having the full force and effect of the book being thrown at you, even for a relatively minor felony/misdemeanor
---if you happen to have multiple priors----is significant."And should he not at least try to impeach a witness if the only witness is under indictment and perjures himself in his statement?"
There is a lot more to winning a criminal
case, from the defendant's perspective, other than making the primary witness look bad. Some jurors think your guilty just because you are there at trial
. There is usually circumstantial evidence in addition to witness testimony so that even a witness has committed proven perjury, that will not necessarily result in a not guilty verdict. There is always a risk to trial---even when you are completely innocent. When you are not 100% innocent, the risks are even greater.
The whole idea of a plea is that you avoid the uncertainty of a much stiffer sentence
if you roll the dice. For every case you hear of where the defendant rejected the plea deal and walked free after trial---you'll find 10 behind bars, doing a lot more time than they were offered in the first place.
I wish you the best in your future.
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