As many people may already know, felonies are typically categorized as the serious criminal offences, in comparison to misdemeanors. If a defendant is found guilty of a felony they have been accused of the punishment is a minimum one-year in prison, which means not a county or local jail. Much like bonds, when you are charged with felonies you are also obligated to pay fines for your actions in most criminal cases, which can result in high amounts.
Serious types of felonies include but are not limited to murder, attempted murder, escaping from prison, assisting in the act of a felony, arson, and rape. There are several other crimes that are also considered felonies and you should learn these to ensure you avoid acting these crimes out.
You may also be familiar with the term “misdemeanor” but have never understood its difference from a felony. Misdemeanors are not as serious as felonies and are often resolved by paying off fines, attending classes as a form of rehabilitation, or jail time as opposed to prison time. It is easy to depict what type of crime was committed based on time served or given. There are certain factors that could escalate a misdemeanor to a felony. Crimes that typical remain misdemeanors are vandalism, trespassing and theft, amongst a few others. In the event that there is the use if a deadly weapon during the commission of a misdemeanor, there is now room to escalate the charge. If there was a theft committed at a small convenience store, this is a misdemeanor. However, if this theft involved the use of a deadly weapon such as a pocketknife it then becomes an aggravated crime, aggravated theft. When this occurs, there is a possibility of more felony related punishments and conditions such as longer jail time or larger fines to pay.
Without the knowledge it is difficulty to understand the trouble you potentially face when committed a crime. Felonies are misdemeanors are very different but share several similarities that would advice an attorney to ensure you are not taken advantage of in the courtroom. A skilled attorney, like a Decatur criminal lawyer, will be able to educate you of your rights as they pertain to your state and area, as well as possibly defend you if you are brought in front of a judge. If you or a loved has been charged with a felony, speak with an attorney sooner than later so that you all may receive the best options available to you.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Andrew R. Lynch, P.C. for their insight into criminal defense.