What criteria should be used when using discretion to offer a plea bargain to a person that committed a crime?

Expert Answers
pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Prosecutors should consider the following criteria:

  • How likely are they to win a trial without a plea bargain?  If they are quite sure they can win a trial on a greater charge, they should not allow the defendant to plea bargain to a lesser charge.
  • Do they need the defendant's cooperation?  If the defendant would be able to help them (by providing evidence) win another case that seems more important to them, it makes sense to offer the defendant a plea bargain in order to encourage the defendant to help willingly.

These are the most important criteria that prosecutors should consider.