When is a Crime a Felony? Understanding the Law

Lady Justice

There are three main categories of crime under the law. These are misdemeanors, felonies, and infractions. Among the three, felonies are the most serious and consequently have harsh punishments.

In cities like Cleveland in the US, you need a criminal attorney to represent you when you the court charges you with a felony. Legal experts at Mastandrea Law say the wrong choice could have far-reaching consequences, as a conviction might result in disbarment from business with the government and restrictions on firearm possession, voting rights, and employment. Here are the various classifications of felonies.

Crimes against Persons

These felonies refer to those that cause harm to other people or any threat of bodily harm. These include assault, battery, manslaughter, drug-related crimes, DUI, rape, and robbery with violence. Harassment, stalking and kidnapping are also considered felonies against a person. Crimes against other people are the most common types of offenses with over 500,000 convictions annually.

Crimes against Property

This crime covers the destruction of property, which includes arson, burglary, theft, and vandalism. Fraud as a felony involves stealing from a government agency, large sums of money or valuable assets. Vandalism on government property carries a more severe punishment compared to other property vandalism. Vandalism on federal property includes monuments, national parks, military installations and historic sites.

White Collar Crimes

These non-violent crimes account for a fifth of annual felony convictions every year. White collar crimes take place in professional and business settings. The suspect in this crime attempts to get financial gain at another person’s expense. Embezzlement, insider trading, Ponzi schemes, money laundering, forgery and copyright infringement are among typical white collar crimes.

When you hire the right legal representative, you can receive the best defense against a felony charge. People are often convicted of a felony because their representative does not do the proper research to build a winning defense. Find the right criminal defense attorney in Cleveland to help you prevent a conviction.