Understanding Misdemeanors in Oklahoma
Misdemeanors in Oklahoma are not the most serious of crimes, but they still can result in some pretty harsh consequences. Most Oklahoma individuals do have a general understanding that misdemeanors are more serious than infractions, but not as serious as felonies. However, it is still important to understand the different types of misdemeanors in Oklahoma. It is also important to know what to expect if you or someone you know receives misdemeanor charges. For example, if you recently moved to Oklahoma, a crime that may be a felony in another state may be a misdemeanor in Oklahoma, or vice versa. This is because all states have their own unique criminal laws.
Examples of Misdemeanors in Oklahoma
Criminal charges that are misdemeanors in Oklahoma include, but are exclusive to, the following:
• Driving Under the Influence (DUI), and other tobacco or alcohol-related criminal charges;
• Leaving a child unattended in a car;
• Assault and battery (depending on the severity of the conduct);
• Unlawful possession of a firearm;
• Simple drug possession, such as possession of a small amount of marijuana;
• Theft, shoplifting, trespassing, and other minor property crimes; and
• Juvenile crimes.
While the above-listed crimes may be considered misdemeanors, it is very important to remember that some of these crimes may be considered felonies depending on the specific nature and seriousness of the criminal charge in question. For example, assault and other violent crimes may be both a misdemeanor and felony. It depends on the seriousness of the conduct. If a weapon was part of a particular assault charge, then the charge may be a felony. On the other hand, if the assault charge did not include a weapon at all, it may be a misdemeanor; thus, resulting in less serious consequences.
Penalty for Misdemeanors in Oklahoma
Many states classify their misdemeanor and felony crimes into different categories based on the severity of the crime. In Oklahoma though, a misdemeanor is simply a misdemeanor. The punishment for each misdemeanor conviction varies depending on the severity of the crime and unique facts. As a result, there is no real need to classify one type of misdemeanor as “Class 1” versus “Class 2”. Regardless of what misdemeanor you are charged with, you could be facing jail time of up to one year and a fine of up to $500. Most misdemeanor charges can be resolved without the need to impose jail time. Some individuals who do not have adequate legal representation may face jail time if they choose to represent themselves.
While misdemeanors are less severe than felonies, the consequences of a misdemeanor conviction can be just as detrimental as some felony convictions. For example, a potential employer may consider a prior misdemeanor marijuana possession conviction to be just as serious as a prior felony cocaine possession conviction. All employers, universities, landlords, and others will have different views on what they consider to be serious criminal activity.
Regardless of the nature or severity of an Oklahoma criminal charge, it is essential to retain an Oklahoma Criminal Defense Attorney who takes a criminal charge head on to help you reach the most favorable result possible given the individual facts and circumstances of your case. Any criminal charge that has the potential to harm your criminal record may become a plague that follows you around for years to come. With the help of a qualified Oklahoma Criminal Defense Attorney, you may be able to have your criminal charge dismissed outright or reduced to a lower criminal charge that will not result in harsh consequences.
Contact a Misdemeanors Attorney in Tulsa
If you need a criminal defense lawyer for either a misdemeanor or felony case call the trusted criminal attorneys at Kania Law Office. Call today and get a free consultation 918-743-2233
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