A felony is a violent or nonviolent crime that is more serious in nature. It is the most severe class of criminal offense. For example, murder, rape, burglary, kidnapping, and arson are all considered felonies. Each state has its own punishment methods based on the felony act, but generally, it can result in imprisonment in a state facility, as opposed to a county jail, and lasting over a year. If the offender had an experienced felony lawyer or a criminal defense attorney, they might be able to cut punishment down drastically.
Aside from felonies, the other two main crimes are misdemeanors and summary offenses. Misdemeanor examples include retail theft or trespassing, and they can result in imprisonment of less than a year. An experienced criminal defense attorney can often help you avoid jail time and instead secure probation, monetary fines, or community service.
Summaries are a low-level criminal offense, such as disorderly conduct, harassment, or traffic violations. Most of the time, there is no imprisonment, but in circumstances where there is, it can often be multiple months. This often occurs when folks are dealing with a history of Driving While Suspended. Oftentimes it is important to have an attorney on your side with these types of offenses to keep your record clean and to retain your drivers license.
For those who are not U.S. citizens and have been charged with a felony, they may have to face immigration consequences as well. If the government decides to initiate deportation proceedings, then that person will have to return back to their country, even if they are a green card holder. Many times, the offender will have to serve jail time in the U.S., and once finished, they will be deported. A criminal defense attorney who knows immigration laws can help by coming up with plea bargains that could remove deportation from the picture.
If you have been charged and accused of COMMITTING a felony, then you need to seek out an experienced felony lawyer Erie PA immediately, preferably a local one who practices routinely in the County you’ve been charged in. A criminal defense attorney can help you through the process, research your case, protect your legal rights, and use systematic strategic methods to help you get the best possible outcome.