Any type of criminal charge should be taken seriously, as a conviction for even a minor crime can come with jail time and the creation of a permanent criminal record. For help ensuring that you have the best defense possible during your own trial, please contact an experienced Centerville criminal defense attorney who can begin working on your case.
In Ohio, criminal offenses fall under a wide range of categories, including:
The severity of the penalties that come with a conviction for these offenses depends in large part on how they are charged, with some qualifying as the less serious misdemeanor, and others falling under the category of a felony offense. Generally, felony offenses, which include sex crimes, drug trafficking, burglary, and arson, are punishable by longer prison sentences and heftier fines, while those who are convicted of misdemeanor offenses, such as driving without a license, drug possession, harassment, and petty theft, may only be required to perform community service or serve a term of probation in addition to paying a small fine.
Before a person can be convicted of committing a criminal offense in Ohio, there must be proof that he or she had the mental state to commit the crime, which means that the person acted recklessly, intentionally, or with either purpose or criminal negligence. Even if an alleged offender is found to have had one of these required mental states, however, he or she still cannot be found guilty of a crime unless that mental state was also coupled with an act that furthered the offense. For instance, the act of murder requires a person to act purposely when taking the victim’s life, so if a killing was accidental, a defendant cannot be found guilty of homicide, although he or she could be found guilty of criminally negligent homicide, which does not require the same level of intent.
Proof that these elements have been fulfilled must be established beyond a reasonable doubt before a person can be convicted of a criminal offense. This makes it especially important for those who are accused of committing a crime, to retain an experienced criminal defense lawyer who can help build a strong defense and ensure that this burden of proof is not met.
Being charged with a criminal offense can leave a person feeling vulnerable and unsure of their next steps. Speaking with an experienced criminal defense attorney can help reduce this burden, while also ensuring that you are aware of your legal rights. To ensure that your own interests are represented after being charged with a crime, please contact the dedicated Centerville criminal defense legal team at Comunale Law Office today. We are standing by and eager to help you begin working on your case, so please call or contact us online at your earliest convenience.
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