The Connecticut Penal Code divides criminal offenses into two broad categories, with misdemeanors as the less severe type of crime than felonies. That said, misdemeanors are still criminal offenses where a conviction could result in steep fines, the possibility of jail time, various administrative penalties, and a permanent criminal record.
Whether you have been arrested for a misdemeanor before or are facing first-time charges, you should not try to handle your case without guidance from a defense attorney. A Norwich misdemeanor lawyer at Ruane Attorneys can explain your rights throughout the legal process and work tirelessly to secure a favorable result.
Penalties for a Misdemeanor Conviction in Norwich
There are four classes of misdemeanor charges, each representing a different level of severity in the eyes of law enforcement and court authorities. While some misdemeanor offenses are “unclassified” and have unique sanctions defined by statute, most misdemeanor charges follow this sentencing structure:
- Class D misdemeanors – maximum 30-day jail term and $250 fine
- Class C misdemeanors – maximum three-month jail term and $500 fine
- Class B misdemeanors – maximum six-month jail term and $1,000 fine
- Class A misdemeanors – maximum one-year jail term and $2,000 fine
Notably, a court is never legally required to impose a mandatory minimum jail sentence for misdemeanor offenses. This means courts have significant discretion in approaching misdemeanor offenses, particularly for first-time offenders. Depending on the circumstances, an attorney at our firm could negotiate for a defendant to participate in a government-approved rehabilitation program or pursue other alternative sentencing for a misdemeanor. Preventing a conviction can help a defendant avoid jail time and a permanent criminal record.
How Legal Counsel Can Help with a Misdemeanor Charge
Working to mitigate the criminal and administrative sanctions of a misdemeanor charge is far from the only service a Norwich lawyer could provide. From the beginning of the criminal proceedings, legal counsel could represent the defendant’s best interests and work diligently to protect their rights. This includes interactions with law enforcement as well as situations outside of formal interviews and investigations. A local misdemeanor attorney can help prevent someone from making incriminating statements that may be used against them in court.
Ruane Attorneys could also explain how the law defines a particular misdemeanor offense, collect and preserve exculpatory evidence, examine the prosecution’s case and the actions of arresting officers for violations of state law, and negotiate with prosecutors on the defendant’s behalf. If necessary, our lawyers in Norwich could help appeal a misdemeanor conviction based on trial errors or illegally obtained evidence.
Contact a Norwich Misdemeanor Attorney for Assistance
Misdemeanor offenses can have life-changing repercussions for people charged with them. When you are accused or arrested for these charges, you must take the situation seriously and act immediately to protect your rights. If you try to fight a charge like this alone or depend on an overworked public defender, you put your future at risk.
Support from a Norwich misdemeanor lawyer can be vital to preserving your best interests and securing a positive outcome for your case. Contact Ruane Attorneys today to set up a consultation and learn your legal options for fighting the allegations against you.