In the United States, an offense involves the breaching of a law. In other words, it can also be a crime. More specifically, an offense can also occur in the form of a felony, misdemeanor, or act of violation against rights that have been implemented by the government. Through this definition, it can be seen that there are several levels of offenses according to U.S. law. If you have been in trouble with law, you will need to know the different levels of offenses that exist so that you can prepare for the various consequences that come from committing an offense of each type. It is important to avoid jail at all costs, but it should also be a priority to stay away from situations in which you can end up in trouble with a law. Thus, this article will describe and include examples of the four different types of major offenses, as well as discuss some of the possible punishments and consequences relating to each type.
Class B Misdemeanor
At this class level, the misdemeanor must be severe enough to call for a term of confinement in the nearest county jail. However, the term cannot exceed 180 days, and a fine can be set so that no jail time needs to be served; the fine will not exceed the amount of $2,000 USD. Some examples of misdemeanors that qualify for this class level would be DUI, which is also known as the charge for drunk driving, criminal trespassing, theft of checks in the amount of $50 to $500 USD, avoiding jail time or detention term, and/or failing to meet bail conditions.
Class A Misdemeanor
At the class A level, the severity of the punishment will increase to match that of the crime or offense committed. Similarly, the confinement term will be extended to no more than one year in the county jail. At the same time, the amount of the fine will also increase; thus, the fine cannot be more than $4,000 USD. Some examples of misdemeanors at this level would include a DUI for a second time, assault with or without a weapon, theft of a vehicle, and/or possession of illegal weapons.
State Jail Felony
Under this category, offenders can be confined for a term of no less than 180 days and no more than two years in a state jail. For these types of felonies, the fine is optional and cannot exceed the amount of $10,000 USD. Some examples of felonies at this level would include abuse of credit cards, fraud, illegal use of motor vehicles, reckless behavior, and injury/harm caused to a child.
Third Degree Felony
The severity of this felony is significantly high in that the confinement term can be anywhere between two and 10 years in a state prison. However, there is also the option of paying a fine, of which the amount cannot exceed $10,000 USD. Some examples of a Third Degree Felony can include a DUI for the third time, indecent behavior to a child, kidnapping, and/or possession of an illegal weapon or firearm.