Even law-abiding citizens can find themselves on the wrong side of the law, whether due to a false accusation, mistaken identity, or simple bad luck. Whatever the situation, being charged with a criminal offense should always be taken seriously, as a conviction can come with harsh penalties including jail time, hefty fines, probation, community service, and restitution. Navigating Ohio’s criminal justice system can be difficult, and with so much at stake, it is critical for defendants to have a thorough understanding of their rights and options. If you have been accused of committing a crime in Ohio, it is important to speak with an experienced Xenia criminal defense lawyer who can help you begin building a defense.
Ohio’s criminal code is extensive, so there are a number of different types of crimes with which a person can be charged, including:
Each of these offenses comes with its own set of penalties, some of which are mandatory, even for first-time offenders.
Ohio’s less serious criminal offenses are usually categorized as misdemeanors, which are divided into the following five categories:
Certain crimes come with specific minimum sentencing guidelines, in which case, a court could deviate from these categories and assign a defendant a much harsher sentence.
Felony charges are usually levied against those with a criminal record and who commit more serious offenses such as robbery, assault, and grand theft. Like their misdemeanor counterparts, felony offenses are divided into five categories, with fifth-degree felonies, such as breaking and entering considered the least serious. First degree felonies, on the other hand, include more serious of crimes such as voluntary manslaughter and come with sentences of up to 11 years in prison and a $20,000 fine. The most serious offenses, such as murder, are not categorized by degree, but come with specific penalties. Similarly, mandatory prison sentences are also imposed for specific crimes, such as aggravated murder, sexual offenses, and possession of a firearm during a crime.
If you have been charged with a crime, you need the advice of an experienced attorney who can represent your interests. Please contact Comunale Law Office today to learn more about how we can help.
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