Felonies vs Misdemeanors

Felony and misdemeanor are the two divisions under which crime is categorized. Any crime that bears a punishment that carries jail time of one year or less is referred to as a misdemeanor while a felony is a crime that has an associated imprisonment of more than one year. Misdemeanor crimes are considered to be less severe than felonies and are often times settled by paying a fine.

Examples of misdemeanor charges are:

•    Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI)
•    Resisting arrest without violence
•    Shoplifting or petty theft
•    Disorderly intoxication
•    Loitering and prowling
•    Public intoxication
•    Reckless driving

Examples of felony charges are:

•    Copyright infringement
•    Vehicular homicide
•    Child pornography
•    Drug trafficking
•    Tax evasion
•    Kidnapping
•    Robbery

It is important to note that within each category of crime whether felony or misdemeanor; there are levels of severity which carry varying degrees of punishment. Felonies are divided into capital crimes, first, second, and third degree while misdemeanor is categorized as either first or second degree.
In seeking strong legal representation for felony or misdemeanor charges; an Orlando criminal defense lawyer should be the first call you make. First degree misdemeanor crimes carry a jail term of up to one year while second degree misdemeanors are punishable with up to sixty days in county jail.
As far as felonies go, capital crimes carry a death sentence while the other degrees of severity carry long prison sentences. These prison terms range from less than five years to multiple life sentences. Therefore, only an Orlando criminal defense lawyer can help to reduce or even void some of these charges.

Author: Amir Ladan
A former assistant state attorney for Orange/Osceola Counties, Amir has handled thousands of cases and dozens of trials, ranging from DUI and traffic offenses to murder, in both adult and juvenile court.

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