There is a big difference between being charged with a misdemeanor or felony in Florida. Misdemeanors are typically less serious crimes that are punishable by up to one year in jail, whereas felonies are more serious crimes that require harsher punishment. Felony offenders face longer prison sentences and may experience a number of other penalties.
For more information about misdemeanors and felonies, or to receive specific advice that relates to your case, call Panama City Attorney Al Sauline of Albert J. Sauline, III Attorney at Law! Aggressive representation backed by more than 18 years of criminal defense knowledge is only a phone call away. See what a former prosecutor at the firm can do for your case.
Examples of misdemeanors include disorderly conduct, simple battery, DUI, marijuana possession (under 20 grams), shoplifting (under $300), trespassing, and vandalism. A misdemeanor can be classified as a "misdemeanor of the first degree" or as a "misdemeanor of the second degree." Penalties will depend on which type of misdemeanor and the specifics of the crime.
Florida misdemeanors have a statute of limitations of one or two years (the state cannot prosecute after this time has passed).
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What are the Penalties for Misdemeanor Charges?
Examples of misdemeanor penalties:
- For a misdemeanor of the first degree, you can face up to one year in jail and a fine up to $1,000.
- For a misdemeanor of the second degree, you can face up to 60 days in jail and a fine up to $500
Examples of felonies include aggravated assault & battery, burglary, child abuse, drug possession (unless <20 grams of marijuana), grand theft, homicide, and kidnapping. Because felonies are considered to be severe crimes, you will face harsher punishment. Depending on the circumstances of the crime, such as whether aggravating factors were involved, your penalties may increase.
What are the Penalties for Felony Charges?
Examples of felony charges by degree include:
- For a felony of the first degree, you can face up to 30 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000.
- For a felony of the second degree, you can face a prison term of up to 18 years and a fine up to $10,000.
- For a felony of the third degree, you can face up to five years in prison and a fine up to $5,000.
In some situations, you can also face capital or life felonies. For a life felony you will have to face life imprisonment and a fine of up to $18,000, whereas for a capital felony (such as first degree murder), you can face the death penalty.
If you have previously been convicted of two or more felonies, you can expect harsh penalties (due to Florida's recidivist sentencing). Most serious crimes either have no statute of limitations or have a longer statute of limitations than misdemeanors.
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Why Choose This Misdemeanor & Felony Attorney?
- More than 18 years of criminal law experience
- Former prosecutor defending you
- Proven, trial-tested advocacy from a local attorney
- Same-day returned phone calls
- Exclusively focused on criminal defense law
If you are facing a felony or misdemeanor charge, call Albert J. Sauline, III Attorney at Law. The firm offers one-on-one representation that emphasizes aggressive advocacy and honesty. You will never receive empty promises or unrealistic expectations. The team works hard to make sure your penalties are minimized, and your future is protected.
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