If you have been arrested on suspicion of having committed a Class C misdemeanor in Connecticut, it is imperative that you contact an attorney as soon as you can. While Class C misdemeanors are not as serious as many other criminal offenses, they can still result in serious legal consequences, including fines, probation, and even imprisonment. In addition, a conviction for any crime can result in a criminal record that can make it difficult to get a job, rent an apartment, or attend a college or university.
At Duffy Law, we have the skill and experience necessary to provide effective criminal defense representation. To talk to one of our Connecticut criminal defense attorneys about your options, call our office today.
What Is a Class C Misdemeanor?
Under , crimes are divided into various categories that are based on the severity of the offense. The most serious crimes are felonies, which can be punished by imprisonment for over one year and fines. Less serious offenses are categorized as misdemeanors, which are punishable by one year or less in prison and fines.
Misdemeanor offenses are further broken down into Class A, Class B, Class C, and Class D misdemeanors. Of these groups, Class A misdemeanors are the most serious, while Class D misdemeanors the least serious. It is important to remember, however, that any criminal conviction is a consequential matter that should be handled by an experienced attorney. Some examples of offenses that are considered Class C misdemeanors under Connecticut state law include the following:
- Criminal trespass in the third degree
- Criminal mischief in the fourth degree
- Larceny in the sixth degree
- Fraudulent use of an ATM
- Issuing a bad check
- Disorderly conduct
- Drinking while operating a motor vehicle
- Criminal lockout
- Loitering in or about school grounds
- Obstructing free passage
The above is not a complete list of Class C misdemeanors. Additionally, the legislature often creates new offenses or reclassifies existing offenses. Prosecutors also have discretion when making a decision as to how to bring a case, and similar conduct may fit into various criminal classifications. Regardless of how your case has been classified, the Connecticut criminal defense lawyers at Duffy Law have the qualifications necessary to ensure that it is resolved as favorably as possible.
The Consequences of a Class C Misdemeanor Conviction
While Class C misdemeanors are not the most serious of crimes in the state, they can still result in severe criminal penalties. As a result, it is critical for you to retain an attorney to protect your rights. The maximum sentence a court can impose after a conviction of a Class C misdemeanor includes the following:
- Three months in jail
- $500 fine
These penalties can result in secondary consequences that can be just as severe, and potentially worse, than anything imposed by the court. For example, the actual financial cost of a Class C misdemeanor conviction can be much than $500, as many people who go to jail for three months also lose their jobs. In addition, a criminal conviction on your record can make it difficult to get another job, as many employers ask applicants whether they have ever been convicted of a crime. Similarly, many landlords make a background check a standard part of their rental application, and may be hesitant to rent to someone who has a criminal record.
If you are a foreign national, you may even be facing deportation for a Class C misdemeanor conviction. If you plead guilty or are convicted, ICE may take you into custody and initiate deportation proceedings, potentially separating you from your employment, friends, and family. For this reason, it is critical for anyone who is not a United States citizen and is facing a criminal case to speak to an attorney familiar with the immigration implications of a conviction. At Duffy Law, we are well-aware of the intersection of criminal and immigration law and take special care to ensure that our clients are fully advised of the potential consequences of taking a plea deal or being convicted.
How a Connecticut Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help
Many people who are facing a criminal case in Connecticut wonder exactly how the representation and counsel of an attorney can help. Here are some of the specific things that a lawyer can do to help resolve your case as favorably as possible:
- Protect your rights during any questioning by authorities
- Reduce or even eliminate your bail after an arrest
- Represent your rights in any court appearances you may have
- Investigate the circumstances of your arrest and determine whether your rights were violated
- Gather evidence that indicates your innocence
- Raise any legal defenses that apply in your case
- Negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor handling your case
- Advise you about any potential consequences you may be facing
- Represent you at trial
- Pursue post-conviction appeal, if necessary
Due to the potential consequences associated with a Class C misdemeanor conviction, the attorneys of Duffy Law will dedicate the resources necessary to make sure that you have the strongest defense possible. Even if you determine that pleading guilty is the best course of action, having the representation of an attorney can result in a much better outcome than you would obtain on your own.
In the event that you are adjudicated guilty, the attorneys at Duffy Law are also qualified to help individuals with a criminal record get their records expunged once the required period of time has passed. To learn whether you qualify for expungement now, call our office to speak with a lawyer.
Contact Duffy Law Today to Speak with a Connecticut Criminal Defense Attorney
If you’ve been accused of a Class C misdemeanor in the state of Connecticut, do not make the mistake of thinking that it’s “no big deal.” Any criminal conviction can result in serious legal consequences and have a long-term effect on many aspects of your life.
The most effective thing you can do to protect your legal rights after an arrest is to retain an experienced Connecticut criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. At Duffy Law, we are committed providing aggressive and effective criminal defense representation to people accused of crimes. To schedule a case evaluation with one of our attorneys, call our office today at 203-946-2000 or send us an email through our .