There are different levels of crime, depending on the seriousness of the offense, and every state has its variations. In Woodridge, Illinois, misdemeanors are crimes that carry less than a year sentence in jail, and fines of less than $2,500. Felonies carry harsher penalties, and you may lose your right to vote for a time, as well as other rights. While misdemeanors are not as serious, they can still be troublesome, so you need skilled criminal defense attorneys on your side.
After a certain amount of time, you may be able to get your criminal record erased if they are misdemeanors, or at least have them sealed. Skilled criminal defense attorneys can advise you and help you through the system. Felonies can keep you from getting certain jobs. Misdemeanors do not legally keep you from getting a job, but a potential employer could use them against you.
There are three classes of misdemeanors in Woodridge, Ill., A, B, and C., depending on the severity of the crime and the level of punishment. Some crimes can be both, depending on the particulars of the individual’s case.
There are also levels of felonies. Some crimes can be both, and some can expand into felonies depending on the situation. Assault and battery is a good example. Assault is making threats. Battery is actual physical contact. Often the charge is assault and battery, and it can be just one as well. As the severity of crime increases, the level of potential punishment also goes up. That can increase to the level of felony, which results in a harsher punishment and prison terms in a state institution. Misdemeanor sentences are carried out in a local jail facility.
Class A misdemeanors are the most serious and carry the heaviest fine. Some of these can become felonies at a certain level. A Class A crime carries a jail sentence of up to a year in jail, or a fine of less than $2,500, or both. It can also include up to two years of probation. These are the maximum penalties.
Class A Misdemeanors Can Include:
- Aggravated assault
- Damage to property
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Child endangerment
- Simple theft
Class B misdemeanors are the middle ground, not as serious as a Class A crime. These crimes have less than 180 days in jail and fines of less than $1,500, There may also be two years of probation. A judge can sentence a person to those maximums, or any combination that they choose.
Class B Misdemeanors Can Include:
- Assault in some cases
- Excessive speeding, 30 MPH over the speed limit.
- Repeated driving offenses
- A very small theft.
Class C misdemeanors are for small crimes that still carry some punishment. This type of crime includes 30 days or less in jail, a fine of $1,500 or less, and up to two years of probation. Again, the judge may use any combination of these punishments.
Class C Misdemeanors Can Include:
- Some assault cases
- disorderly conduct
- Speeding over 10 MPH over the speed limit, but less than 30.
Regardless of the severity or level of the crime, you have been accused of, skilled criminal defense attorneys can help before and after your day in court.
You may not know the law, and an attorney can help you negotiate the system and help make sure your rights are protected. Often, charges are modified or reduced if you agree to plead guilty. This may or may not be in your best interest, and this is where an attorney can help. Most cases never get to court, but a good attorney can help every step of the way.
After you have been convicted, paid your fines, and served your sentence, you can also use an attorney’s help.
A criminal record, no matter how small, can still follow you around and impact your life for as long as you live. Potential employers or business partners could see your record and use that as a reason not to hire you or do business with you.
Even if you are charged and not convicted, the record of that can still haunt you and cause problems.
If you are not convicted, the record of that can be expunged, or erased by a judge. You will need an attorney to go before the judge for you in that case. In some cases, this can be done once the sentence and probationary periods have ended.
If you have been convicted it is unlikely you will be able to get the record erased. In some cases, you may get your record sealed. This means it is not public information and a potential employer would not be able to find it. Police can still see inside a sealed record, however.
Sex offenses, DUI, assault, or battery are crimes that cannot be sealed by a court.
Laws related to Woodridge, ILL., are complicated and there are many angles to consider. Judges are also inconsistent throughout the state in how they interpret and rule on the law. For this reason, you need skilled defense lawyers who understand the intricacies of the law and who will represent your best interests.
Good lawyers know the law, the system, and the judges that make rulings. This, along with investigating the case itself, is where attorneys can help you the most. You may have committed a crime, but you still have a right to a fair trial, and your rights should be respected. To make sure this happens, get in touch with a skilled defense lawyer to help you get the best possible result.