Felony Punishments in Georgia
In Georgia, all crimes that are punished by more than one year in prison are considered felonies. While many states have Class 1 Felonies of Class A Felonies, Georgia separates crimes into degrees. One example is arson where it is divided into first, second, and third degree. Another example is murder where it can be first or second-degree murder.
The most severe felonies are punished by the death penalty or life in prison. There are only three crimes in Georgia punishable by the death penalty: aircraft hijacking, treason, and murder with an aggravated circumstance. Georgia has executed a total of 72 people since 1976.
Felony Crimes in Georgia
There are many different types of felonies in Georgia, but one of the major categories is violent and non-violent felonies. Non-violent felonies include offenses such as theft by taking or theft by deception. It also includes the sale of drugs or manufacturing of large quantities of drugs. Even though these crimes carry hefty fines and significant prison time, they are considered non-violent felonies.
Georgia felony crimes include:
Some Crimes Can be Misdemeanors or Felonies
Some crimes that can be misdemeanors or felonies. For instance, DUI is generally charged as a misdemeanor. However, a fourth or subsequent DUI conviction within ten years will be treated as a felony. Crimes that involve drugs can be a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the quantity. This is similar to theft crimes. If the property taken is less than $500, then it is generally a misdemeanor. If the property is valued at greater than $500, it is treated as a felony.
That is another reason why it is so important to hire a Georgia Felony Lawyer that is experienced in criminal law. We understand these differences and can examine the facts to see if you were correctly charged with a felony or if the circumstances warrant a misdemeanor conviction instead.
What Will my Punishment be if Convicted of a Felony?
In deciding a sentence, judges have various options depending on the crime committed and the circumstances. The judge may also be influenced by the accused's age and criminal history. One of the common felony punishments is prison time. If a person is convicted of a misdemeanor, their time is generally spent in a county or city jail. But people who receive sentences for more than one year are sent to state prison instead of jail. How many years the accused will spend in prison is left up to the judge. Georgia gives a range for felonies and the judge decides the time within the fields provided in the statute. For example, a person convicted of burglary could face a prison term between 1-20 years. If it is the accused's third burglary conviction, the minimum is a five-year sentence.
Another option is probation or a treatment program. Judges may place the defendant on probation instead of sending them to prison. However, they must adhere to all of their probation conditions or else they will be sent to prison. The conditions will likely include:
- Reporting to their probation officer as directed
- Not committing any other crimes
- Working at suitable employment
- Not moving out of the state
Probation can also include specific conditions related to the case itself. For instance, if the accused was charged with stalking, the special restriction may be no contact provision with the victim.
Additional penalties may include community service, paying restitution to the victim, or alternative programs.
Your best option when facing criminal prosecution is to hire a Georgia Felony Lawyer. They will thoroughly investigate your case and present you with options. They will negotiate with the prosecutor to lessen your punishment. To obtain the best outcome, call immediately to speak with a felony attorney in Georgia.
Long Term Consequences of Felony Convictions in Georgia
While lengthy prison sentences and hefty fines are severe punishments by themselves, felonies have additional consequences. If released from prison, it can be challenging to have a normal life. A felony conviction makes it difficult to obtain housing, credit, or even employment.
No matter if you have been charged with a misdemeanor or a felony, you need a Georgia Criminal Attorney. There are many criminal punishments in Georgia that you could receive, so it is critical to talk to a lawyer before doing anything. We will make sure no stone has been left unturned to see if any other defenses apply to your case. We will weigh each of the possible outcomes and present you with options. Call now and speak with a Georgia Felony Attorney.