Experienced Bowie and Crofton Criminal Defense Attorney Discusses Criminal Charges and Consequences
Representing those accused of misdemeanors and/or felonies throughout the state
The state of Maryland divides criminal offenses into two broad categories: misdemeanors and felonies. While the penalties for a misdemeanor offense may be less severe than the penalties for a felony, you will still have a criminal record if you are convicted. Having a criminal record can create difficulties in every area of your life, such as housing, financial aid for higher education and employment, professional licensing, and other penalties beyond jail time, fines, court costs, and restitution.
If you are facing criminal charges, it is crucial that you contact a Crofton criminal defense lawyer from Carey Law Office right away, so we can begin building a strong case and making a difference in the outcome of your criminal matter.
What is a misdemeanor?
Misdemeanors are infractions deemed less serious than felonies. They are always handled in state or federal courts, and generally have smaller fines and penalties. Most misdemeanors will have jail sentences of up to 12 months, though there are exceptions to this rule. Some common examples of misdemeanor charges include:
- Reckless driving
- First-time DUI
- Second-degree assault
- Minor drug possession
- Public intoxication
- Open container violation
- Disorderly conduct
- Theft (property or service with a value of less than $1,000)
In some cases, misdemeanor charges may be expunged from your record after a certain amount of time. Our firm can assist you with that, as well.
What are the potential penalties for a misdemeanor?
Maryland law outlines the penalties for misdemeanor crimes within the statute describing the crime. There is a wide variety of penalties for misdemeanors, including jail sentences ranging from 30 days to as many as ten years. If you are convicted of a misdemeanor, you will also have to pay fines which might range from $500 to $5,000 depending on the offense.
You may also be at-risk of losing your career – even for a misdemeanor. Certain charges are considered crimes of moral turpitude – corrupt, depraved, or degenerate acts or practices. Having a conviction on your record could lead to the loss of your professional license or security clearance.
What is a felony?
Felonies are the most serious offenses under Maryland law and federal law. Both local and federal judicial systems classify crimes as misdemeanors or felonies because of the difference in the consequences of conviction. If you are convicted of a felony you will face serious consequences aside from a jail sentence, fines, and restitution. Some examples of felony offenses under Maryland law include:
- First degree assault
- Drug trafficking
- Sexual assault
- Repeat DUIs
- Armed robbery
- Weapons charges
Regardless of the nature of the charge(s) against you, you deserve the best legal representation to safeguard your future. If you choose Carey Law Office, you will work one-on-one with an experienced Bowie criminal defense lawyer and a small team of legal professionals. You will always have access to your information, either through us our through our portal, and you will always be treated with respect and dignity.
What are the penalties for a felony?
Depending on the nature of the offense, there is a wide range of possible penalties for a felony conviction such as:
- Fines from $500 to more than $5,000
- Prison time from one year to 30 years or more
- A permanent criminal record
- Loss of gun ownership rights
- Ineligibility to serve in the U.S. military
- Ineligible to hold public office
- Loss of professional licensing
- Loss of security clearance
- Ineligibility for financial aid for higher education
Can criminal charges be fought?
You have the right to a defense, guaranteed by the Constitution. Whether you are facing misdemeanor charges, felony charges, or fighting the MVA over the loss your driver’s license, there are always options available to you. Certain criminal convictions can also be expunged, or removed, from court and law enforcement records; we can assist you with this process of clearing your record.
Additionally, just because you were charged with a crime does not mean that you committed a crime. A skilled criminal defense attorney understands the law and the judicial process. We can challenge the charges against you and assess what evidence the government has against you, and ultimately advise you whether it makes sense to fight against the charges, or entertain any plea bargains on the table.
Work with an approachable Bowie and Crofton criminal defense lawyer
A criminal conviction carries significant penalties. Choosing an experienced Bowie criminal defense attorney from Carey Law Office to represent you will ensure that your rights are protected. Our ultimate goal is to have your charges dropped completely. Our ultimate goal is to have your charges dropped completely. When that is not possible, we aim for an acquittal on all charges, or to have your charges lessened to minimize the damage.
If your loved one is facing criminal charges, make sure that his or her rights are protected from the interrogation process through the investigation, the trial, and at sentencing. We are here to make sure that you don’t face these charges alone. We know that you want your life back; our goal is to help you achieve that, with little to no lasting damage, so you can get back to your life.
Schedule a consultation with an experienced Bowie criminal defense lawyer today
From our offices in Bowie and Crofton, we serve clients in Anne Arundel County, Prince George’s County, and throughout the state. We are a boutique law firm, and we are dedicated to offering a level of personal attention to you and your case that you will not find at a larger office. You are welcome to call 301-464-2500 or complete our contact form to get in touch with Carey Law Office today. We’ll get you through this.