In criminal law, there are state and federal crimes. State laws are enacted
by state legislatures, whereas federal laws are created by Congress. Here
in California, when you break a state law, you’ll be arrested, and
a criminal case will be opened to punish you for committing a crime.
California criminal cases fall into three categories: infractions, misdemeanors
and felonies. Of the three, infractions are the least serious and felonies
are the most serious. In many cases, traffic violations are considered
infractions. If someone is guilty of an infraction, he or she will face
a fine and if they pay it, they won’t go to jail. In Orange County,
infractions are handled by the Traffic Division.
Common Misdemeanor Crimes
Misdemeanors are less serious than felonies, but more serious than infractions.
Generally, misdemeanors are punishable by up to one year in county jail,
or by a fine of $1,000, or by a fine and confinement. Common misdemeanors include:
- Petty theft
- Public intoxication
- Disturbing the peace
- Prostitution (first offense)
Driving under the influence (DUI)
- Driving while license suspended
- Possessing more than 28.5 grams of marijuana
Common Felony Crimes
As mentioned earlier, felonies are the most serious type of crime in California
and in all states. If you are found guilty of a felony in Orange County,
you could be imprisoned in jail or a state prison for at least one year.
If you committed a particularly heinous crime, you could even receive
the death penalty. Common examples of felonies include:
If you are facing criminal charges in Orange County, it’s critical
that you enlist the help of a skilled
criminal defense attorney. At the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc., we handle both
state and federal criminal defense; therefore, we are positioned to fight
hard for your freedom and your rights, regardless of the types of charges
you are facing.
To get started,
contact our firm to schedule a free criminal defense consultation!