Fresno Felony Defense Lawyer
Felony crimes are the most serious crimes that Fresno criminal defense attorneys come across, and these are accompanied at the least by a permanent felony conviction on your record, and at the worst, by death or life in prison.
A person charged with felony crimes absolutely must obtain representation by an experienced Fresno criminal defense attorney who has expertise in felony cases. Felonies are typically punishable by a prison term. The “prison term” could be years or life in a state prison. Even minor felony criminal offenses could result in probation with a short jail term.
Even in such minor cases, a defendant could be looking at a permanent felony conviction that can severely limit housing options, restrict employment opportunities, limit educational opportunities, and overall limit the quality of life. Felonies have high rates of successful prosecutions. In California for example, in 1993 more than 65% of all people charged with felony crimes were convicted and sentenced.
Some types of crimes may be prosecuted either as misdemeanors or felonies. These are known as “wobblers.” Representation by an experienced Fresno felony criminal lawyer is extremely important in cases like this, because the legal implications of a felony conviction can be dramatically different depending on whether you are convicted of a misdemeanor or felony. For instance, serious crimes like assault, battery, embezzlement, certain types of drug crimes, and possession of firearms can be charged as either misdemeanors or felonies. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can help seek the minimum charges possible.
If you are convicted of a felony, representation by an experienced attorney can be critical at sentencing. Judges often have discretion when deciding upon a sentence. The level of punishment can increase depending on many factors, such as whether serious violence was involved in the crime, the vulnerability of the victim and whether weapons were involved. However, if the defendant played a smaller or passive role in the crime or if there was provocation involved in the crime, then a defendant may be eligible for a lower sentence.