Old saying, I think from a college football coach years ago. The term applies in a few criminal defense cases. It does not apply in most cases where someone is accused of a crime, and, they did what they are accused of, or, something close to it. There is a lot of work to be done in those cases, but, attacking the other side is not usually going to be a good part of the strategy.
Offense comes in for those cases where someone is falsely accused, where they are being prosecuted because of a serious mistake by law enforcement or the prosecution, or, worse, a deliberate attempt to prosecute someone due to ulterior motives on the part of law enforcement, and or the prosecution, the motive can be political, eliminate an actual or potential political opponent, personal, settle a grudge, racial or other bias, or any other reason to prosecute someone besides a belief that they are guilty.
I wish that I could say that the system always works, that no one is ever prosecuted for an improper motive, but, unfortunately that is not the case. I have seen several cases over the years where law enforcement, prosecutors, or both used the power of the state and public resources to attack someone who was not guilty of any crime. In one case this was done to eliminate a political opponent, someone who criticized them, in another someone who had previously criticized a county attorney was prosecuted later to settle a score. Fortunately, in these cases no one was convicted, the defense was successful, but, not without a lot of stress and aggravation for the people falsely accused.
What do you when the state is abusing it’s power by falsely accusing you? Hit back, counter the negative media attention the prosecution has piled on you by making the accusations. I have seen arrests timed for maximum media attention, get attention for your defense as well, your lawyer needs to be thinking about how to get the word out in your favor, otherwise the negatives from the other side will be all the public hears about. When appropriate, make complaints to the appropriate oversight authorities, oversight of officers and prosecutors is woefully inadequate in this state, but, do not give up on making the complaints. Consider legal action against those accusing you, and pushing your prosecution. Actions under federal and state law are possible. The laws are complex, and, you may want to consider filing your case before the criminal case is completed to avoid possible statute of limitations, time limit to file issues.
If you are falsely accused do not assume that the system will correct itself and help you. Unfortunately, too many prosecutors, and judges do not see, or do not want to see when the system does not work. You are on your own when you are subject to a false accusation, get a lawyer who knows how to fight back, and be prepared for a battle.