Misdemeanor criminal charges are often thought of as minor -- and they're certainly not as serious as felonies. However, misdemeanors make up around 80% of the criminal cases that are heard in this country, and the courts do take these seriously. In fact, people can face harsh consequences for misdemeanor convictions that will affect their lives well into the future.
Some people mistakenly believe that they aren't facing time in jail when they have a misdemeanor charge. The fact is that many misdemeanors do come with time behind bars, so you should factor this into your defense strategy when you're trying to decide what to do about the charges. We're here to help you learn about your options for these cases, and we will stand beside you to help protect your interests throughout the case.
Drivers in California know that feeling of nervousness when they notice a police car driving behind them. It doesn't automatically mean the cop is ready to give a ticket, but traffic tickets can be such an expensive hassle that merely the sight of a cop car in the rear-view mirror can set many drivers' hearts racing. Here are a few simple tips drivers should keep in mind to avoid getting a ticket their next time out.
In California, there are a few ways in which a person could be charged with disturbing the peace. First, a person could challenge another person to a fight in a public place. Second, an individual could cause a disturbance by making or creating noise at a loud or unreasonable level. Additionally, someone who uses language that is considered to be offensive could be charged with disturbing the peace.
Misdemeanors account for about 80 percent of the criminal dockets in California and around the country. Misdemeanors are minor crimes punished by fines, probation or short jail sentences, but the way these sanctions are handed down has been criticized by civil rights groups and criminal justice researchers. Much has been written in recent years about sentencing disparities between white and black defendants in felony drug cases, but studies reveal that these imbalances are even more pronounced in misdemeanor cases.
Over 90 percent of residents in California and the rest of the nation who are older than 16 years old have a license to drive. It is not unusual for them to have multiple vehicles registered in their names.
A person caught by California authorities driving without a license issued by the state could face penalties ranging from a fine to jail time. The exact circumstances determine the severity of the punishment.
On Aug. 19, a California man was arrested after he and several other drivers performed a series of donuts on the top deck of the Bay Bridge in San Francisco. The "sideshow," an informal performance of automobile stunts, brought traffic to a standstill. Several videos of the incident were posted on social media.
A California man who was too drunk to drive was arrested on Oct. 22 for allegedly making his pre-teen nephew get behind the wheel of his car. The incident occurred in Port Hueneme at approximately 2:45 p.m.
Some California drivers who face fines for traffic violations might soon have another alternative to forking over the money. Advocates for motorists in Solano County have reached a settlement with the Superior Court that would allow people who owe fines for traffic tickets they can't afford to pay to pay in installments or request community service instead of a fine.