Being charged with any crime is a frightening experience, and if you are found guilty, your life and the lives of your loved ones could be changed forever. Fully understanding what crime you have been accused of and what the laws are surrounding those crimes is critical to the success of your case.
A felony is the most serious crime you can be charged with in the state of Mississippi. With all felonies, a minimum of a one year incarceration is required at sentencing, and terms that are several years long will be served at a state prison as opposed to a county jail. Unlike many other states, Mississippi does not classify the seriousness of felony crimes, however, they are categorized and severe crimes merit harsher penalties. The following crimes are considered felonies under state law:
- Obtaining money under false pretenses, including counterfeiting
The above felonies do not have a statute of limitations. A two-year statute of limitations exists for other felony crimes, such as felony drug crimes or a felony DUI.
While a misdemeanor is less severe than a felony, it should not be taken any less seriously. A misdemeanor crime also has the potential to cause a convicted individual to face a jail sentence and be forced to pay hefty fines. Additionally, being convicted of a misdemeanor also results in a criminal record. The following crimes are considered misdemeanors under state law:
- Petit larceny
- Possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana
- Carrying a concealed deadly weapon
Generally speaking, the statute of limitations for misdemeanors is two years, however, in cases of sexual assault on a minor, the statute may be extended.
Obtain Adequate Legal Representation as Soon as Possible
Under the U.S. Constitution, every individual is guaranteed a zealous defense against any crime when arrested, no matter how severe. In order to protect the rights afforded to you by the law, it is imperative that you consult with a seasoned criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Even if you are only a suspect in an investigation and have not yet been charged with a crime, it is in your best interest to work with an attorney to determine the best action to take.
Attorney J. Brian Kelley is well versed in Mississippi criminal law and can provide you with a solid defense, regardless of whether you were arrested for a felony or a misdemeanor. Call now for a consultation at (662) 324-3476.