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Augusta Misdemeanor Defense Attorney

Misdemeanor Defense

Facing criminal charges is stressful, even if the charge is a misdemeanor. While misdemeanor charges aren’t as serious as felony charges, they can still result in jail time, fines, restrictive terms of probation, and more. At the J. Todd Mitchell Law Firm, we understand what’s at stake, and we’re here to fight for you.

Misdemeanor Crimes
Overview

Misdemeanor Defense Attorney in Augusta, GA

What is a Misdemeanor?

In Georgia, a crime is classified as a misdemeanor if it carries a maximum jail sentence of one year or less. Many states have multiple classes of misdemeanors with different maximum jail sentences and fines. In Georgia, all misdemeanors are punishable by up to 12 months in jail.

Most misdemeanors carry a maximum possible fine of $1,000. However, some misdemeanors are elevated to the class of “high and aggravated misdemeanor.” A high and aggravated misdemeanor is still punishable by a maximum of 12 months in jail. But, the fine may be increased to $5,000.

Georgia crimes may not be classified in the way you might expect. For example, there are crimes against a person (such as battery), and even sex crimes (such as public indecency) that are classified as misdemeanors. Property crimes (such as theft) may be misdemeanors or felonies. And there are traffic offenses that are classified as felonies. It’s important not to make any assumptions about the possible consequences of a crime.

Your criminal defense lawyer can explain exactly what is at risk in your case, including the usual sentencing range for similar misdemeanor cases in your county.

Common Georgia Misdemeanors

There are a great many possible misdemeanor charges in Georgia. Some of the most common include:

Theft (O.C.G.A. 16-8-2 to 16-8-9) 

Most theft crimes are misdemeanors. These include theft by taking, theft by deception, theft by conversion, theft of services, retail property fencing, theft of lost or mislaid property, and theft by receiving stolen property or bringing stolen property into the state.

However, these crimes may be charged as felonies depending on the value or type of property stolen.

Battery (O.C.G.A. 16–5-23 to 16-5-23.1)

Simple battery (O.C.G.A. 16-5-23) and battery (O.C.G.A. 16-5-23.1) are both misdemeanor charges in most circumstances. Simple battery may be charged as a high and aggravated misdemeanor based on either characteristic of the victim or the setting in which the simple battery occurred. For example, simple battery is a high and aggravated misdemeanor if the victim is 65 or older or is a pregnant woman.

Battery may be a high and aggravated misdemeanor if the battery occurs in a certain location, such as a public transit vehicle or station. Battery may also be elevated to a felony in some circumstances. For example, if the battery falls under the definition of family violence and the defendant has a prior conviction for family violence, the charge is elevated to a felony. Similarly, a third offense against the same victim will be charged as a felony.

There is a third battery charge, aggravated battery, that is always charged as a felony.

Driving Under the Influence (O.C.G.A. 40-6-391)

Driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or other intoxicating substances (DUI) is typically a misdemeanor in Georgia. A third offense is a high and aggravated misdemeanor. A fourth or subsequent conviction is a felony. It’s important to note that while the maximum jail time and fine are the same for first and second offenses and the maximum jail time is the same for a third offense, the minimum fines and jail time are not. In other words, a second DUI offense carries more serious consequences than a first, even though both are misdemeanors.

Reckless Driving (O.C.G.A. 40-6-390 to 40-6-390.1)

Reckless driving (O.C.G.A. 40-6-390) is a misdemeanor in Georgia. However, reckless stunt driving (40-6-390.1), which includes drag racing, is at least a misdemeanor of high and aggravated nature, with a minimum fine and a minimum jail sentence. These minimum penalties increase with subsequent convictions. For a fourth offense, the crime is charged and punished as a felony.

Trespassing (O.C.G.A. 16-7-2)

Criminal trespass is classified as a misdemeanor in Georgia, meaning a maximum sentence of 12 months in jail and a maximum fine of $1,000. However, when a person trespasses for the purpose of committing an illegal act, that is a different crime and is a felony.

Important Information About Augusta Misdemeanor Offenses

Too often, Georgians who are charged with misdemeanors make the mistake of thinking that the charge isn’t serious so they don’t need to hire a defense attorney. It’s true that misdemeanors are less serious than felonies, but that doesn’t mean you can afford to take misdemeanor charges lightly.

Key facts you should consider when deciding whether to speak with an Augusta misdemeanor lawyer include:

  • Under Georgia law, a misdemeanor can result in a jail sentence of up to 12 months
  • Many misdemeanor crimes carry mandatory minimum jail sentences
  • A misdemeanor may carry a fine of up to $1,000, and up to $5,000 if it is a high and aggravated misdemeanor
  • A misdemeanor conviction that results in less than 12 months in jail may mean restrictive terms of probation for the remainder of that time, along with other obligations such as community service or drug and alcohol counseling
  • Some misdemeanor convictions may have consequences beyond jail time and fines, such as loss of your driver’s license

Free
Consultation

Advocating for Your Innocence

If you’ve been charged with a crime in Georgia, you owe it to yourself to get knowledgeable guidance and representation–even if the charge is a misdemeanor. Augusta Defense Attorney J. Todd Mitchell knows how important it is that you fully understand the charges against you and the possible consequences. That’s why he offers free consultations to people facing misdemeanor charges in Georgia. To learn more or schedule your consultation, call 706-750-0501 right now, or fill out our contact form.

Case Results

When the stakes are high, the results matter most.

Not Guilty

Attempted Rape

Client charged with attempted rape, aggravated assault, home invasion, burglary in the first degree, aggravated assault, kidnapping, possession of a firearm. Not guilty all counts.

Reduced to Voluntary Manslaughter

Murder

Client charged with murder and possession of a firearm. Case reduced to Voluntary Manslaughter.

Not Guilty

Possession With Intent

Client charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. Jury verdict of simple possession of marijuana.

Not Guilty

Simple Battery

Client charged with simple battery. Not guilty all counts at trial.

Case Dismissed

Trafficking

Trafficking methamphetamine. Dismissed. Probation on remaining counts.

Not Guilty

Aggravated Assault

Client charged with aggravated assault, burglary in the first degree, and forgery in the fourth degree. Facing 41 years in prison. Not guilty verdict on all felonies. Only convicted of one count of misdemeanor battery.

Client Reviews

Here is what our clients have to say.

Skilled, Respectful Representation

"Mr. Mitchell turned a complex issue that we had been fighting for years into an outcome we didn't think was possible, in a matter of months. Make him your first call and you will not regret it. I highly recommend Todd Mitchell"

Won My Case In Less Than 1 Hour

"Mr. Todd was a great attorney and handled my case quickly. I hired him three days before my trial and he came in, did a great job, and he got my case beat in less then an hour in the courtroom. I can't recommend Todd Mitchell enough"

Successfully Proved My Son's Innocence

"Mr. Todd took the time to listen to my son's side of the story. He was very understanding and patient. He took the time to gather the evidence that supported the case and proved my son's innocence. We are very appreciative. Again, thank you!"

The King of Trials - Mr. J. Todd "The Lion" Mitchell 

"Mr. Mitchell is a real lion in the court room. I was facing 52 years and came out with a 2-5 year sentence. When his back is against the wall, Todd doesn't give up. I think he should change his name to J. Todd "The Lion" Mitchell. He is the only lawyer I will trust."

Todd is Knowledgeable & Fearless!

"I was in an impossible situation and thought I would spend a chunk of my life behind bars. Then God sent Todd Mitchell. He spoke up for me to the judge and D.A. at the hearing and was continuously on top of the case. His is the only number I'll call."

Great Counsel and a Great Outcome

"I hired Todd to handle a criminal case with a high probability of significant jail time. He was key in navigating the complexities of my case and always offered sound advice which ultimately resulted in the best possible outcome for my circumstances."

Todd Mitchell is a Winning Trial Expert

"Todd Mitchell is a trial expert, not just a criminal defense lawyer. His extensive experience WINNING trials, not just trying them, sets him apart from other attorneys in this area. If you want someone who will fight for you, hire Todd Mitchell."