Mechanicsburg Felony Defense Lawyer
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There are two main types of crimes in Pennsylvania: misdemeanors and felonies. The main difference between the two is a felony conviction carries harsher criminal penalties compared to getting convicted of a misdemeanor, such as serving a lengthy prison sentence, rather than serving time in local or county jail. Furthermore, having a felony conviction on your criminal record can not only cause irreparable damage to your personal life and professional reputation, but it can also result in losing certain rights, such as the right to own a firearm or the right to vote.
If you have been arrested for or charged with a felony, it is imperative to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to increase your chances of obtaining a favorable outcome in court. At The Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter, we can thoroughly evaluate your case, listen to your story, and determine all your legal options to either reduce the charges/penalties you face or get your case dismissed altogether.
Call (717) 537-0928 or fill out our online contact form today to schedule an initial consultation and learn how we can help you!
Felony Classes in Pennsylvania
As we mentioned earlier, felonies are more serious than misdemeanors. Pennsylvania law sets limits on the maximum sentence for most felonies, based on the degree.
The following are the felony classes in PA:
- First-degree felony – Punishable by imprisonment for up to 20 years and/or a fine of up to $25,000. Common examples of first-degree felonies include rape, kidnapping, drug trafficking, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, and theft of property valued at over $500,000.
- Second-degree felony – Carries a prison term of up to 10 years and/or a maximum fine of $25,000. Common examples of second-degree felonies include sexual assault, aggravated assault, burglary, and theft of property worth between $100,000 and $500,000.
- Third-degree felony – Punishable by a prison sentence of up to seven years and/or a maximum fine of $15,000. Common examples of third-degree felonies include drug possession with intent to distribute, bribery, carrying a concealed weapon without a license in any place besides your home or business, or theft of property valued between $2,000 and $100,000. However, many third-degree felonies can also be charged as first-degree misdemeanors, depending on the facts and circumstances of the case.
Keep in mind, some specific felonies are associated with different sentences. For example, if the charge is rape involving a minor under 13 years old, a conviction carries a fixed prison sentence of 40 years, or a life sentence if the victim suffered a serious injury.
Additionally, there are mandatory minimum sentences for certain crimes. For instance, if you are convicted of a violent felony, a person who has a prior conviction for another violent felony must serve a minimum term of 10 years, while a person with at least two prior convictions has a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years.
Also known as homicide, murder is defined as the unlawful killing of another human being without justification or a valid reason, or with malice aforethought. When it comes to sentencing a murder and attempted murder conviction, Pennsylvania has separate rules compared to other felonies.
The following are the state sentencing guidelines for murder:
- First-degree murder – Death or life imprisonment
- Second-degree murder – Life imprisonment
- Third-degree murder – a fixed prison term of up to 40 years, or a mandatory life sentence if the defendant had previously been convicted of murder or involuntary manslaughter
- Attempted murder – a maximum fixed prison sentence of 20 years, or 40 years if the offense involved a serious injury
Ready to Defend You Today!
In addition to prison time and fines, a felony conviction can make it extremely difficult to obtain employment, find a place to live, apply for a loan, and live a normal life. With your livelihood on the line, you need to have a professional on your side to guide you through the complexities of the criminal justice system and protect your rights and freedoms in each step of the legal process. Do not hesitate to let The Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter fight for you immediately!
Contact us today at (717) 537-0928 to speak with our Mechanicsburg felony defense lawyers! Serving clients throughout Central Pennsylvania.
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