The Ohio Legislature has identified a wide range of conduct that is considered unlawful in the state and is punishable by jail time, fines, or other sanctions. While its laws are similar to those in other states, Ohio is also unique in that it tends to penalize drug offenses particularly harshly and also has a somewhat complicated sentencing structure. For this reason, those who have been accused of committing crimes in Ohio are strongly encouraged to retain an experienced Kettering criminal defense attorney who is well-versed in state law and can ensure that their legal rights and interests are protected.
Ohio law criminalizes a wide range of conduct, but the most common offenses with which defendants are charged include:
The penalties for these offenses depend on a number of factors, including the defendant’s age, the seriousness of the crime, whether the defendant has a prior criminal history, and whether the offense is charged as a misdemeanor or a felony.
Ohio divides criminal charges into two main categories — felonies and misdemeanors. Misdemeanors are considered to be less serious offenses and as such, are generally punishable by imprisonment for less than a year, although the exact penalties that a defendant faces depends on how the offense is categorized. In Ohio, misdemeanors are divided into five different categories with first degree misdemeanors representing the most serious type of misdemeanor such as assault, and minor misdemeanors such as disorderly conduct or reckless driving making up the least serious offenses. In most cases, the most serious misdemeanor offenses are punishable by up to one year imprisonment, while minor misdemeanors often come with no jail time at all.
Felony charges, on the other hand, accompany the most serious offenses, such as grand theft, assault, and robbery and are often levied against defendants with a prior criminal history. Like misdemeanors, felonies in Ohio are divided into five categories based on severity, with first-degree felonies representing the more serious crimes, such as voluntary manslaughter and fifth-degree felonies accompanied by the lowest penalties. The most serious offenses, however, such as murder, are not categorized at all, but come with their own specific penalties. Similarly, some serious crimes, like sex offenses and the possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, come with their own specific mandatory prison sentences.
If you have been charged with a crime, you could be facing serious jail time and hefty fines. Please contact Comunale Law Office today to learn more about how our legal team can help you begin building a strong defense.
Our personal injury lawyers at Comunale Law Office have litigated for their clients that have suffered from injuries from vehicle accidents, hazardous products, medical malpractice and dangerous job conditions successfully gaining compensation for any losses.