Every offense committed can be categorized based on the severity of the crime. Punishment for an offense is dependent the details of the crime. The most common categories are misdemeanor, felonies, and infractions. Infractions are the least severe of the three. They are usually petty offenses that result in fines and not jail time. When you commit an infraction you are not entitled to a jury nor is the state required to provide a public defender. However, you may retain legal counsel on your own. In most cases, prosecutors are not required to appear before court in the case of infractions. The most common types of infractions are traffic violations (speeding tickets, driving the an expired license, etc). Following infractions misdemeanors are the second most serious criminal offense. Punishments for misdemeanors include, but are not limited to jail time(usually not over a year), community service, fines, and probation. When charged with a misdemeanor you are entitled to a jury and representation by public defender covered by the government. In some states misdemeanors are divided into categories depending on the severity of the offense. Of the three, felonies are the most serious type of offense. Felonies can be violent or non-violent crimes. If a person is a second time offender they can be charged with a felony even if the offense was a misdemeanor. Punishment for these type of offenses can range from a year in jail to life in prison. Much like misdemeanors, felonies are often divided into categories depending on the severity of the crime committed.
Listed below is a compiled list of the most common felonies committed in the U.S:
1. Violent crimes
Violent crimes are crimes in which the offender uses threat or force upon a victim. In some cases acting in a violent manner is the primary goal of the crime, but in cases such as robbery violence is a means to an end.
- manslaughter-when someone kills another person, but they are less accountable than in the case of murder. Manslaughter can be divided into two categories: involuntary and voluntary.
- murder-the killing of someone with no justifiable cause. In most cases when a person commits a murder they are usually sentenced to life in prison. However, the mental state of that person also influences the outcome.
- sexual assault- coercion to complete a sexual act or non-consensual sexual activities
- rape-a sexual act usually involving intercourse or other penetration that is not consensual
2. Public intoxication
Also referred to as drunk and disorderly, public intoxication are public displays of drunken behavior. This usually includes rowdiness or drunken behavior.
3. Weapon violations
Most weapon violations include carrying a concealed weapon or being in possession of a gun without a license.
If you have been convicted of a felony and are seeking legal counsel, contact us at 830-620-9402.