Fairfax Criminal Lawyer: Basic Virginia Felony Classes Infographic
You are probably already aware of the basic premise that, “felonies are much more serious than misdemeanors.” But within each category of these two very broad offenses, various “Classes” exist, each with a corresponding standard for purposes of determining a maximum sentence.
The portion of the Code of Virginia that the infographic below broadly outlines can be found in section 18.2-10. This page is for non-lawyers and/or non-criminal defense attorneys…those not familiar with the Virginia justice system…and is meant to provide a very basic understanding of the six main Virginia Felony Classes. The actual sentence you will face, if charged with a felony in Virginia, should be explained to you by a legal professional. Our Fairfax Criminal Lawyer with the Vincenzes Law, PLLC, Northern Virginia Criminal Defense Firm, offers free consultations. If charged with a crime — felony or misdemeanor — you could face time in jail. One such example of a serious non-felony that is punishable by a jail sentence is reckless driving:
Even a reckless driving charge in Virginia is punishable by up to a year in jail, because it is a Class 1 misdemeanor. But someone with no experience defending such a charge, or a person faced with this charge who is a non-lawyer, may not realize that a year of active jail-time and/or the maximum monetary punishment for this particular criminal offense ($2,500) is relatively uncommon.
Take Advantage of a Free Consultation if Charged with a Felony OR Misdemeanor in Virginia: Our Fairfax Criminal Lawyer Offers Free Initial Consultations
A free consultation is a great way for you to understand the strengths, weaknesses, and potential defenses pertaining to the unique charges, facts, and criminal and/or driving record (if any) of the accused. Many people we represent have no criminal record, and they come to us seeking an analysis of their case. The vast majority of people we help have a common goal: they want to avoid an active jail sentence.
Sometimes, avoiding time in jail is very feasible. Other times (and we explain why our opinion is what it is), it is not likely to avoid spending some period of time in confinement. There are usually measures an accused individual can take to increase the chances that the Commonwealth Attorney (prosecution) will agree not seek to “throw the book” at the defendant. These measures may include participation in various programs aimed at diverting future criminal behavior, drug treatment programs, and in some cases letters from upstanding members in the accused person’s community.
Virginia Felony Infographic: Preliminary Words of Wisdom
Although the Code lists the classes and sentences authorized, these penalties are “maximum” penalties. The actual sentence one may face depends on many factors, including the prior record of the accused, among other things. If you are faced with a misdemeanor in Virginia, you may wish to read about the various classes (or categories) and their respective penalties. On this page, you will find information about the six main classes of Virginia felonies. All criminal charges—felonies and misdemeanors—remain on an adult’s record for life. If found not guilty, it may be possible to have the charge expunged from your record, but typically only when there was a “not guilty” verdict of some form. Our Virginia criminal defense firm and Fairfax criminal lawyer can explain whether your felony can possibly be reduced to a misdemeanor, as well as any other actions or steps you can take to reduce the chances of a severe jail sentence or monetary fine.
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