Indiana Criminal Defense Lawyers
When you are arrested and charged with any crime, contacting an Alcorn Sage Schwartz & Magrath law firm for assistance is critical to ensure you have a solid defense team working on your side. Chances are you are experiencing a range of emotions from anger to fear. Keep in mind, you should say as little as possible to law enforcement officers since any comments you make can be held against you later and makes it much harder for your defense team to put on an effective defense.
Indiana Misdemeanor Crimes: Understanding Sentencing
Often if you are arrested for a misdemeanor crime you may think that the sentencing is not going to be particularly harsh, especially if it is your first offense. However, as an Indiana criminal defense law firm, we have seen clients sentenced to jail for even a minor, first offense. Some of the penalties you could be facing for a misdemeanor offense include:
- Class C Misdemeanor – minors who are found in possession of alcohol may be charged with a Class C misdemeanor. In Indiana, this means you could be facing up to 60 days in county jail as well as a fine of up to $500. Driving under the influence (DUI) can also be considered a Class C misdemeanor if it is your first charge.
- Class B Misdemeanor – if you are charged with public intoxication you could be facing jail time of up to 180 days as well as fines of up to $1,000. Intentionally defacing or damaging someone’s property could also result in Class B misdemeanor charges.
- Class A Misdemeanor – Indiana has very harsh drug laws and anyone found in possession of marijuana or operating a vehicle under the influence which endangers another person may be found guilty of a Class A misdemeanor. Fines can be as high as $5,000 and you could be facing up to 365 days in county jail if found guilty.
Indiana Felony Crimes: Harsh Sentencing Minimums
In 2014, the Indiana Criminal Code was modified for criminal offenses that were charged as felonies. The changes to advisory sentencing changed minimum sentencing requirements for many crimes but there are still very harsh sentences if you are charged with a felony crime.
- Level 6 Felony charges – those convicted under these statutes could face up to 2 ½ years in state prison as well as steep fines of up to $10,000. In some cases these crimes, could be reduced to misdemeanors.
- Level 5 Felony charges – vehicle theft could be punishable by imposing fines of up to $10,000 and those convicted could be facing up to six years in prison. In many cases, minimum sentencing could be as much as three years in state prison.
- Level 4 Felony charges – aggravated battery charges could result in fines of up to $10,000 and those convicted could face up to 12 years in the state prison system.
- Level 3 Felony charges – those who are charged and convicted of this class of felony could be facing jail time of up to 20 years. All felony charges carry a minimum fine of $10,000.
- Level 2 Felony charges – in addition to a fine of up to $10,000 those convicted of a Level 2 felony charge in Indiana could face jail time of up to 30 years.
- Level 1 Felony charges – those who are convicted of a Level 1 felony charge could be facing as many as 50 years in prison as well as fines of up to $10,000.
- Murder is the most serious of all felony charges and those who are convicted can face a fixed prison sentence of as many as 65 years. In addition, a conviction could result in life without parole and in particularly egregious cases; the death sentence may be imposed.
Regardless of the crime you are charged with, you need a competent Indiana criminal defense law firm to work closely with you on your defense. A conviction of even a minor crime could have long-term consequences and may hamper your ability to obtain housing or continue working.
Call Alcorn Sage Schwartz & Magrath at 800-330-8765 for a free consultation.