A lot of people we speak to think of misdemeanors as “lesser” crimes than felonies. While it’s true that a misdemeanor charge is characterized by lower fines and less time in jail or prison, it’s still very serious to have one on your record. Generally speaking, misdemeanors fall into three categories: Classes A, B and C. Class A is the most serious, with fines up to $2500 and a potential jail sentence of up to 11 months and 29 days. Classes B and C mean up to 6 months or 30 days in jail, and between $50 and $500 in fines, respectively.
Examples of Class A, B & C misdemeanor crimes in TN
A misdemeanor charge can become a felony charge depending on the circumstances, but generally speaking, offenses like these are considered misdemeanors:
- DUIs (Fourth offense or more is a felony)
- Possession of up to half an ounce of marijuana
- Possession of drug paraphernalia
- Breaching restraining orders
- Indecent exposure, including partial or full nudity
- Petty theft (theft under $1,000 for offenses occurring on or after January 1, 2017)
- Reckless driving
- Vandalism, including graffiti and destruction of property
- Disorderly conduct
- Leaving children unsupervised in vehicles for an extended period of time
A quick word about assault. In Tennessee, assault can fall under the misdemeanor category or the felony category, depending on your alleged intentions, whether or not you had something that could be perceived as a weapon, and against whom you committed the act. Further Tennessee has adopted any alleged choking, (e.g., hands around the throat) as a Class C felony aggravated assault.
Why should you work with a Sevierville criminal defense attorney?
You should work with a Sevierville criminal defense attorney because merely reading law books is not enough: you want someone who is trial-tested and who has the skills and resources to look out for your best interest. In addition, a Sevierville criminal defense lawyer can:
- Help negotiate a deal with the prosecutor if necessary
- Inform you of legal rules, of which you may be unaware
- Guide you through the legal and judicial processes
- Locate reliable witnesses to testify on your behalf
- Protect your rights in a trial
If you or a loved one has been charged with a misdemeanor, the Sevierville criminal defense attorneys at Delius & McKenzie can fight to protect your future. For more information about our services, please call us at (865) 428-8780 or fill out our contact form. We provide comprehensive counsel to clients in Seymour, Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg and Sevierville, and the surrounding areas.
Attorney Bryan E. Delius was born and raised in Sevier County, TN. He founded Delius & McKenzie more than 20 years ago, after receiving his JD from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. He is admitted in Tennessee and in several federal court systems. Learn more about Bryan E. Delius.