There are thus many misconceptions about misdemeanors primarily because of this belief that these crimes are not considered serious by the legal system. Nothing can be further from the truth though.
In our country, hundreds of people are apprehended every day for misdemeanors crimes. Our local justice system will then charge these individuals with fines that can be as much as $2,000 or more. Failure to pay this said fine can immediately result in potential jail time. Yet, if you can pay your bail, you will spend no more than 24 hours in a local facility. Many of these people are poor, while the remainder of these people tends to be middle to upper-class citizens.
In the final layer of the cake lies misdemeanor cases. These are the least-serious types of crimes in the criminal justice system. They consist of public drunkenness, minor theft, disturbing the peace, and so on. They also include petty or minor theft and disturbing the peace. Misdemeanors are the largest category of cases in the criminal justice system. They are also the most common. Many misdemeanor cases are resolved with plea
A felony is a crime punishable by at least a year’s imprisonment. A misdemeanor is a crime punishable by a fine or less than a year’s imprisonment.
An offense is deemed petty if, for example, the maximum prison sentence is less than or equal to six months. There is an opportunity for the defendant to have this exception overturned if the individual can prove that the offense is serious, not petty, through the fines, community service, and minor prison sentence awarded by the court. A defendant may also waive their right to a jury in certain states. This type of trial is called a bench trial.
In today’s criminal justice system in the United States, there is a lot of dispute between what the qualifications are for juvenile and adult crimes. Some believe that the only difference is age. Others say it is the severity of the crime. It’s obvious that when adults commit crimes, whether they are a misdemeanor offense or a felony, they pay for it. The confliction comes when a juvenile commits a crime. What exactly determines if they are tried as an adult or a juvenile? Does it vary by state-to-state? Are there federal laws that govern that debate? There have been cases where children have been tried in a court of law as an adult. So what exactly is the clear cut reason why juveniles are tired sometimes as adults, and other times as juveniles?
An individual may be arrested for a felony or a misdemeanor. Felonies are more serious crimes and can lead to jail time, large fines, or prison sentences. There are several categories of felonies, the highest of which is a capital murder charge, and can result in the death penalty or a lifelong prison sentence without parole. In some cases, felony charges may be punished with probation. Probation helps to relieve the prison system from overcrowding, and allows criminals to be reformed within their community.
| First degree is a Class A felony and carries 20 years without possibility of probation or life imprisonment and/or fines up to $50,000 . Second degree is a Class B felony and carries up to 10 years imprisonment and/or fines up to $25,000. Third degree is a Class C felony and carries up to 5 years imprisonment and/or fines up to $10,000.
In chapter one, the difference between the three types of crimes in Canada were discussed: summary, indictable, and hybrid offences. Summary offences take place in provincial/territorial court, and and the maximum penalty fine is six months in prison, five thousand dollars, or both. An example of a summary offence is soliciting in a public place, or carrying a weapon while attending a public meeting. An indictable offence is one that is much more severe. The sentences given are much more serious. Crimes considered an indictable offence include manslaughter, robbery, and aggravated sexual assault. A hybrid/dual offence could include sexual assault, theft under five thousand dollars, or unlawful imprisonment.
Juvenile delinquents are minors, usually defined as being between the ages of 10 and 18, who have committed some act that violates the law. These acts aren’t called “crimes” as they would be for adults. Rather, crimes committed by minors are called “delinquent acts.” Instead of a trial, the juvenile has an “adjudication,” after which he/she receives a “disposition” and a sentence. However, juvenile proceedings differ from adult proceedings in a number of ways (Reuters, 2017). Delinquent acts are put into two categories. The first category of a delinquent act is one that would be considered a crime had an adult committed it. Given the serious nature of the crime(s), some jurisdictions will try young offenders as adults. The second type of delinquent act is age related or “status crimes” meaning that the crime(s) wouldn’t normally be performed or committed by an adult. For example, staying out past curfew or skipping school known as truancy is an act of a status crime or age related crime.
The criminal justice system has evolved over numerous decades. Punishable crimes were only considered exceedingly serious actions. As time went on; post World War 1, laws were enacted and punishments were enforced to deter crimes from occurring and to protect the public (Gardner and Anderson, 2012). Whitey Bulger and Al Capone were both well-known criminals who seemed to live without proper punishment for what we would consider today. The government changed how laws were passed and laws can be determined by not only the federal government, but state governments, and local governments, as well. These laws are put in place based on what laws are believed to help the community and society (Gardner and Anderson, 2012).
Crimes are frequently classified according to their seriousness as felonies or misdemeanors. Generally, felonies are more serious than misdemeanors. Under the federal criminal law system, felonies are crimes for which the punishment is death or imprisonment for more than a year. A misdemeanor is punishable by a fine or by imprisonment for less than a year. In most states persons convicted of felonies are sent to state prisons, while those guilty of misdemeanors serve their sentence in city, or county jails, or correction houses.