If you have been charged with a misdemeanor offense in Dallas, it may only appear to be a minor criminal offense that will only result in a small fine or community service. However, it can lead to serious repercussions, especially if the charge is ignored and not addressed.
An individual who has been charged with a misdemeanor offense in Dallas can face any of the following penalties:
- Jail time,
- A criminal record,
- Community service,
- Driver’s license suspension, and/or
- An inability to pursue certain professions or educational opportunities.
However, it is important to know that if you have been arrested or charged with a misdemeanor offense, an experienced criminal defense attorney can help. Your charges do not have to result in a conviction.
At trial, the state prosecutor is required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed every element to your alleged offense. If the judge or jury has any doubt at all, the charges against you may be dismissed altogether. Therefore, it is important to consult with a skilled criminal defense attorney about your alleged offense.
Misdemeanor Charges Defense Lawyer in Irving, Dallas, Carrolton, Richardson, TX
If you have been charged with a misdemeanor offense in Dallas, contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today at (972) 233-5700 for a consultation about your alleged offense in Irving, Dallas, Carrolton, Richardson, and surrounding areas of Dallas County, Texas. Our firm will work to potentially get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed.
Common Misdemeanor Offenses in Dallas
Examples of common charges in Dallas can include:
- Driving While License Suspended
- First Driving While Intoxicated
- Second DWI
- Minor in Possession of Alcohol
- Public Intoxication
- Violation of Protective Order
- Criminal Mischief
- Possession of Marijuana
- Misdemeanor Firearm Offenses
- Domestic Violence
- Reckless Driving
The preceding list does not include every offense that exists under the Texas Penal Code but instead consists of the most common charges prosecuted in the Dallas / Fort Worth Metroplex.
Differences Between Dallas Felony and Misdemeanor Offenses
Misdemeanors are generally considered less serious offenses than felony offenses and usually result in less severe penalties and repercussions. A conviction for a felony offense is typically punishable by confinement in state prison for more than one year, and misdemeanor offense convictions are generally punishable by confinement in county jail for one year or less.
Additionally, fines are usually less than fines for felony convictions. However, anyone who is considered a habitual or repeat offender can face greater penalties and punishments than first-time offenders.
Types of Misdemeanors in Dallas
Texas law defines misdemeanor offenses as any criminal offense that is less serious than a felony offense and is punishable by any term less than one year in jail. The Tex. Penal Code § 12.03 defines various classifications of misdemeanor offenses in Texas.
The three types of offenses in Dallas vary depending on the seriousness of the offense, ranging from the least serious, Class C, to the most serious, Class A. They are classified as follows:
- Class C Misdemeanor
- Class B Misdemeanor
- Class A Misdemeanor
Dallas Misdemeanor Charges Penalties
Class C Misdemeanor – According to Tex. Penal Code § 12.23, an individual who is convicted of a Class C offense can face a fine of not more than $500. This is the lowest level of offense in Texas and is the default misdemeanor charged for unclassified offenses.
Class B Misdemeanor – According to Tex. Penal Code § 12.22, an individual who is found guilty of a Class B offense can receive a jail sentence up to 180 days and/or a fine up to $2,000.
Class A Misdemeanor – According to Tex. Penal Code § 12.21, an individual who is adjudged guilty of a Class A offense can be sentenced to jail for up to one year and/or a fine not exceeding $4,000.
Even though the Texas criminal justice system classifies these offenses by various degrees, a Class C is still a serious matter that should be handled by a skilled criminal defense lawyer in Dallas. Even a Class C misdemeanor can stay on your criminal record for a lengthy period of time; therefore, it is important to consult an experienced attorney who can help you create your best legal strategy.
Dallas Habitual Misdemeanor Offenders
Texas law provides for additional penalties for repeat and habitual offenders under Tex. Penal Code § 12.43. A repeat or habitual offender is anyone who has a previous misdemeanor or felony conviction. A repeat or habitual offense may be subjected to any of the following penalties:
- An individual who is currently charged with a Class A misdemeanor offense and has a previous Class A offense or any felony conviction can face a fine up to $4,000 and/or a jail sentence ranging from 90 days to one year.
- An individual who is currently charged with a Class B misdemeanor offense that has a previous Class A, Class B, or any felony offense can be punished by a fine up to $2,000 and/or a jail sentence ranging from 30 days to 180 days.
- An individual who is currently charged with a Class C misdemeanor disorderly conduct or public intoxication offense that has been convicted of any of those offenses three times within 24 months of each offense can face a fine up to $2,000 and/or a jail sentence up to 180 days.
Find A Dallas County Defense Attorney for Misdemeanor Offense Attorney | Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy
Contact us today for a consultation about your misdemeanor crime allegations throughout Dallas County in Texas.
Contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today at (972) 233-5700 for a consultation about your alleged offense in Irving, Dallas, Carrolton, Richardson, and surrounding areas of Dallas County, Texas. Our firm will work to potentially get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed.