Many individuals do not know what to do or who to turn to after an arrest or following the filing of charges. A criminal charge can change your life and cause loss of employment, relationships, financial resources, and freedom. Your first steps following an arrest may be the difference in the outcome of your case.
No one should face these potentially life-changing events alone. Fortunately, help is available for those facing criminal accusations and charges. A Sierra Vista criminal defense lawyer could help minimize the effects of an arrest and get you back to living your life. Reach out to an experienced attorney at Grand Canyon Law Group today to learn more about how we could defend your rights.
The sentencing laws in Sierra Vista can be stringent and depend on the type of underlying offense involved in the conviction. Following a conviction by a judge or jury, a judge will review information about the offense and the convicted individual to determine a sentence that they believe is appropriate given the sentencing range. Sentencing ranges can be complicated, but a knowledgeable attorney can explain the state guidelines for misdemeanor and felony offenses.
Misdemeanor offenses are typically prosecuted in a city, justice, or municipal court. These offenses are sorted by severity into classes one, two, or three under Arizona Revised Statutes § 13-707.
A Class one misdemeanor is the most severe level of all misdemeanor offenses and carries a possible maximum jail sentence of six months. A Class two misdemeanor carries a potential maximum sentence of 120 days, and a Class three misdemeanor carries a potential maximum sentence of 30 days in jail. Convicted individuals also face fines up to $2,500 for Class one misdemeanors and up to $500 for Class three misdemeanors.
Felony offenses are prosecuted in the state superior court. The most significant difference between felony and misdemeanor offenses is that a felony may result in a prison sentence that is usually more than one year. Additionally, there may be a mandatory life prison term in some felony cases and potential losses of constitutional rights.
There are six classes of felonies. Class one felonies are the most serious offenses and include homicide and capital crimes. Class two felonies are also serious offenses and include armed robbery, kidnapping, and drug sales, as well as other similar crimes. Class six felonies are the lowest level and may be reduced to a misdemeanor offense in some cases.
The potential prison time depends on many factors, such as the individual’s criminal history. An experienced Sierra Vista criminal defense attorney could help develop a plan to seek a favorable outcome and mitigate any potential negative factors.
When an individual is arrested or under investigation but has not been charged with an offense, the individual is in the pre-charge phase. Delays in charging can occur for several reasons, but they usually relate to the police agency gathering evidence or waiting on lab results before submitting the paperwork to the prosecution. The pre-charging phase can provide a criminal defense attorney valuable time to communicate with the individuals conducting the investigation.
Representation at the pre-charge stage varies significantly based on the circumstances in each case. A dedicated Sierra Vista criminal investigation attorney could provide beneficial information and evidence to the officers or prosecution handling an investigation.
When facing a criminal accusation or charges, you should not face the police and prosecution alone. With a Sierra Vista criminal defense lawyer, your case will be in the hands of a seasoned legal professional who will fight to protect your legal rights.
At Grand Canyon Law Group, our former prosecutors turned dedicated defense lawyers have significant experience defending cases and know what to expect from the prosecution. Schedule a criminal case evaluation today to learn more about what we could do for you.