Understanding the Difference Between Felonies and Misdemeanors
Are you seeking legal representation from an experienced, tenacious criminal defense lawyer New York, NY clients trust? Call Okun, Oddo & Babat now at 212-642-0950.
When you have been charged with a crime, your offense will be classified as a felony or a misdemeanor. These are not the same as infractions, which are not criminal offenses. An infraction might include disturbing the peace, parking violations, or a vehicle equipment violation. A criminal defense lawyer New York, NY families recommend deals with both types of charges. Some might even specialize in very specific criminal charges such as gun crime.
The Primary Difference Between a Felony and a Misdemeanor
The most obvious difference between these two types of charges is the severity of conduct and the resulting sentence of the offense. In general, drug offenses, sex crimes, violent crimes, and substantial financial violations are felonies. With any felony, you should have legal representation by a criminal defense lawyer New York, NY residents depend on.
Examples of Felonies
- Breaking and entering
- Multiple DUIs
- DUI with a fatality
- Sexual assault
- Weapons crimes
- Sale of controlled substances
- Examples of Misdemeanors
- DUI (*up to a certain number of offense)
- Domestic violence
- Petty theft
- Simple assault
- Disorderly conduct
- Reckless driving
- Possession of drugs (*circumstances apply)
It should be noted that felonies and misdemeanor offense vary by state. For example in some states it is a felony to file a false report while in others it is a misdemeanor. Your criminal defense lawyer in New York, NY can explain your charges and the state laws to you during a consultation.
Being Released on Bail or On Recognizance
Depending on your offense, you may be released on bail or on recognizance. This means you owe a promise to the court that you will show for all future court dates (other conditions may apply). If you have been charged with a felony, you may be required to post bail or bond. Sometimes neither option will apply and you will have to wait in jail for your hearing before a judge. Your lawyer can further explain these options and the relevant obligations or process.
Typically before recognizance or bail is granted by a judge, a lawyer will need to show that you are:
- Not a flight risk
- Have no serious criminal history
- Are not a risk to the safety of the public
- Have family obligations
- Penalties for Misdemeanors and Felonies
Both types of offenses carry different penalties. What consequences apply to your own case will depend on many factors such as whether or not this is your first offense, your conduct in court, and so forth. Both misdemeanors and felonies can result in:
- Fines and fees
- Jail time
- Prison time
- Community service
- Community supervision
- Permanent record
- Death (*only in states where the death penalty applies)
- Mandatory court orders (i.e. no contact with certain people, drug testing, rehabilitation, etc.)
Get Help from a Criminal Lawyer New York, NY Locals Go To
Depending on the circumstances you are in, you might not need a NYC criminal defense lawyer for something like a straightforward traffic ticket. However, for the majority of criminal cases, having a lawyer on your side can make a big difference. If you would like to speak with a criminal defense lawyer New York, NY provides about your charges and possible options, please call Okun, Oddo & Babat at 212-642-0950.
How a Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help You
When you need an experienced criminal defense lawyer New York, NY offers, contact the law firm of Okun, Oddo & Babat. Our attorneys have helped protect the rights of many people charged with serious crimes.
A New York criminal defense lawyer from Okun, Oddo & Babat can review your case at no charge. With a solid defense strategy in place, an attorney may be able to get your charges dismissed or reduced. Call us today 212-642-0950 to speak with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible.
What a Criminal Defense Attorney Does for You
When you hire a criminal defense lawyer in New York, NY from Okun, Oddo & Babat, your rights can be protected to the full extent of the law. Our legal team is thoroughly familiar with the complexities of New York’s criminal laws. If yours is a federal case, our attorneys have won many acquittals in federal court as well. Here is an overview of what an Okun, Oddo & Babat lawyer can do for you:
- Work with the prosecutor to negotiate a best-possible-scenario plea agreement to minimize your sentence and fines.
- If your case goes to court, your attorney can make every effort to win a verdict of not guilty.
- If you are tried in court and found guilty, your attorney can make every effort to minimize your sentence.
- Guide you through the complex and stressful maze of criminal court proceedings. At Okun, Oddo & Babat, we can provide you with a criminal defense lawyer New York, NY defendants have turned to when they needed the optimal representation they could afford.
- Protect your best interests and fight the criminal court system on your behalf. Our attorneys include a former state prosecutor and several lawyers with decades of experience.
- Your criminal defense lawyer New York, NY residents recommend from Okun, Oddo & Babat can thoroughly review every aspect of your case. They may challenge any actions of the arresting authorities or prosecution when there is suspicion of wrongdoing. Under certain circumstances, your case can then be dismissed.
- A criminal defense lawyer New York, NY defendants turn to from Okun, Oddo & Babat may retain experts as necessary to help your defense. As an example, if a forensic crime scene investigator can call crucial evidence into question, your lawyer may hire them. Our legal team has an extensive network of experts available on an as-needed basis.
- If there are witnesses who can help you case, your lawyer may make every effort to find and interview them. Strong witness testimony can be of great benefit when negotiating a plea bargain or a dismissal of charges.
How a Criminal Defense Lawyer in New York, NY Can Help With Your Sexual Assault Charge
When you have been charged with sexual assault, you need the help of a criminal defense lawyer in New York, NY you can trust. What is sexual assault? If one person does not consent to the sexual advances or contact from another person, this is considered sexual assault. It does not matter if it is between spouses, girlfriend/boyfriend, family members, or friends — it is considered sexual assault if there is a lack of consent by one party. The specific charges and definitions vary by state. If someone accuses you of sexual assault, you should not take this lightly. Instead, get the help of an attorney from Okun, Oddo & Babat. They have many years of experience with sexual assault charges. Their vast knowledge, along with their compassion for your situation, can help make you feel comfortable in dealing with this charge.
What must be proven in sexual assault cases?
Any time a sexual encounter occurs and there is no mutual consent, it can be considered sexual assault. Proving lack of consent can be harder to prove if there were no witnesses and it comes down to ‘he said’ ‘she said’. There are some instances where, however, assault can be more easily proven. When one party is intoxicated, whether it be by alcohol, legal or illegal drugs, or otherwise incapacitated, consent is never given. This includes being mentally or physically disabled. It is imperative that you think back to the alleged assault and try to remember as many details as possible, including whether or not alcohol was involved.
What Constitutes Sexual Assault?
Consent is always the deciding factor determining sexual assault. Some examples of sexual assault include:
- Attempted rape
- Coercing a victim to carry out sexual acts, such as oral sex
- Forced penetration or rape
Definition of Force
Force isn’t necessarily referring to physical pressure. Psychological, emotional, or manipulation means to force a victim into performing sexual acts without consent is also considered force. Threats to the victim or their family if they do not succumb to the wishes of the perpetrator or other means of intimidation are also considered by the court to be ‘force’. When someone accuses you of this, it is imperative that you seek help from a New York, NY criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible.
Who are the Offenders?
In some cases, a person may be taken completely off-guard when they are accused of sexual assault. So, who are typical offenders in these cases? Most of the offenders are known by the victims. In fact, seven out of 10 sexual assaults occur between people who know each other.
Date rape, or acquaintance rape, can also refer to a neighbor, classmate, anyone that the victim may know. Even if the victim knows their perpetrator, and even if the victim and perpetrator have a history of being intimate in the past, or even kissing, it does not automatically assume consent is given for additional sexual contact.
Stranger rape occurs when the victim does not know the offender at all. This can occur in many different ways:
- Offender assaults the victim with no previous contact. This happens brutally and quickly and usually occurs in a public place at night.
- A perpetrator works to gain the victim’s trust by conversing with them, then trying to get the victim into their car or to a location where the assault occurs.
- A perpetrator invades the victim’s home to perform the sexual assault.
When it comes to your accusation, know that a criminal defense lawyer in New York, NY will fight for your rights and help you determine which line of defense is most suitable for your case.
If you have any more questions on criminal charges, of if you are specifically seeking help because someone has charged you with sexual assault, Okun, Oddo & Babat offers free case reviews to those who have been charged with a crime. Our attorneys believe strongly in the legals rights of individuals facing jail time. Call us at 212-642-0950 to speak with a criminal defense lawyer New York, NY offers to those who want to protect their rights.
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