Punishment Range for Arizona Misdemeanor Crimes
A misdemeanor crime is less serious offense than a felony crime. Misdemeanor crimes are different than felonies because they are not punishable with prison, but may still be punishable with jail time. Some criminal offenses are similar to felony offenses (such as theft, and assault) but the classification of the offense is determined by the extent of harm or loss suffered by the victim. Arizona has three classes of misdemeanors. An Arizona misdemeanor can be punishable up to 6 months in jail and a maximum base $2,500 fine. A petty offense is a type of misdemeanor but is punishable with no jail and a maximum $300 fine.
Possible Penalties for Arizona Misdemeanors
- Class 1 Misdemeanor are punishable up to 6 months in jail and up to a $2,500 fine.
- Class 2 Misdemeanors are punishable up to 4 months in jail and up to
- Class 3 Misdemeanors are punishable up to 30 days in jail.
- Petty Offense is punishable with no jail, and up to a $300 fine.
Class 1 Misdemeanors
Class 1 misdemeanors are some of the most common crimes that defendants get charged and arrested for. Class 1 misdemeanors include physical assault (causing injury), crimes of domestic violence including disorderly conduct, possession of marijuana (if cited by a police officer), theft of property under $1,000, shoplifting, driving under the influence.
Class 2 Misdemeanors
Class 2 misdemeanors include such crimes as criminal speeding, criminal damage of property less than $250, non physical assault placing someone in fear of imminent physical harm (no physical injury)
Class 3 Misdemeanors
Class 3 misdemeanors, include such crimes as assault by offensively touching someone, violation of promise to appear, loitering, criminal nuisance, adultery.
Petty offenses include such crimes as scalping, furnishing or possession of tobacco to or by a minor, unlawful feeding of wildlife.
Why You Should Hire An Attorney For a Misdemeanor Case.
Being convicted of a misdemeanor offense could have some serious consequences even if they are less serious than a felony conviction. If convicted of a misdemeanor in Arizona, it can still be part of your permanent record. There is no “expungement” or “sealing” of crime records in Arizona. Being convicted of a misdemeanor could result in being barred from licensing in some professions such as teaching, real-estate, and nursing. Having certain prior misdemeanor convictions could result in greater punishment if previously convicted of similar prior convictions. A misdemeanor conviction could be punished with significant jail time and/or fine.
Hiring an experienced criminal lawyer can help determine whether there are any defenses or reasons for dismissal of any misdemeanor charges. A criminal attorney can help negotiate any possible plea agreements at a pretrial conference or represent you at a bench or jury trial in the municipal or justice court. An experienced criminal defense attorney will know the local court system and can assess possible outcomes in court or with local prosecuting agencies and can advise you on the best course of action.