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It can be difficult to know what to do when you have been charged with a crime. A violation can seem minor, but can still have very serious consequences. Michigan law is particularly complicated and trying to figure it out can be frustrating and confusing. For instance, while many jurisdictions have three different felony classifications, the Michigan criminal code has eight.
If you have been charged with a crime, it is essential to find a skilled Troy, MI defense attorney to be an advocate for you, who understands the laws applicable to your situation. A qualified criminal lawyer in Troy will be able to analyze the facts of your case and know the best actions to take in your circumstances. En Español.Overview of Michigan Criminal Law
Crimes are generally divided into two categories — felonies and misdemeanors. Felonies are the most severe, with the potential for lengthy prison sentences and heavy fines. Misdemeanors are considered less serious, although they still may be penalized with imprisonment and large fines.
It is important to be aware that some terms such as “assault” can be used to refer to both a crime and tort. Crimes are violations that are punished by the government, while a tort is an act of wrongdoing for which an individual seeks retribution in the civil court.
So, it is possible to be prosecuted for a crime by the government and then sued by an individual involved based on the same set of circumstances. Quality legal representation through a Troy criminal defense attorney is critical.Criminal Misdemeanors
Some of the more common misdemeanors prosecuted under Michigan law include:
- Resisting arrest
- Driving with a suspended license
- Marijuana possession
- Leaving the scene of an accident
- Disturbing the peace
- Disorderly conduct
- Indecent exposure
These misdemeanors fall into one of three categories, depending on the severity of the crime. Those considered most serious are referred to as “high court” misdemeanors and they carry penalties of up to $2000 in fines and two years in prison.
The middle category of misdemeanors are ones punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $1000. Those deemed least serious are punishable by up to 93 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.Criminal Felonies
With so many different felony classifications, it can be difficult to determine where a particular violation falls under the Michigan criminal code. The circumstances play a key role in determining how a crime is classified.
Generally, the greater the amount of money involved or the greater the harm or potential for physical harm, the most serious the classification and the resulting penalty. Some examples of crimes classified as felonies in the state of Michigan are:
- Murder or manslaughter
- Human trafficking
- Assault with a deadly weapon
- Criminal sexual conduct
- Production of child pornography
- Manufacturing or delivering marijuana
- Knowingly writing bad checks
- Carrying a firearm with illegal intent
An experienced criminal attorney in Troy, Michigan will serve as your personal defender, analyzing how the applicable state, federal and local laws apply to the facts of your case and creating the best possible defense.
Your attorney is your advocate, working at your side to move toward the best resolution of your case. Contact a local defense lawyer today to get started.