Articles Tagged with Arizona Felony Verses Misdemeanor: Q. and A.

“Not all arrests for disorderly conduct charges are lawful. Don’t plead guilty before consulting an experienced criminal lawyer who defends disorderly conduct charges in Gilbert”.

Disorderly Conduct Charges Gilbert AZ
“Disorderly conduct” or “disturbing the peace” charges are common in Gilbert AZ. But just because they are common, does not make them less serious. A good criminal defense attorney who defends Gilbert Disorderly Conduct Charges will be the first to tell you, not to ignore these charges. If you ignore them or fail to appear at your designated court date, a warrant will be issued for our arrest.

Like any arrest or criminal charges, they are not always lawful or justified. But the person arrested for disorderly conduct now faces criminal charges, and will need to get the criminal matter resolved or face potential serious consequences if convicted.

Penalties for Disorderly Conduct in Gilbert AZ
Circumstances surrounding the Disorderly Conduct charges will weigh heavily on the classification for which the conduct will be charged. A large number of these charges are classified as Class 1 Misdemeanors. Class 1 Misdemeanors are the highest level of AZ Misdemeanors. Class 1 Misdemeanors will expose you to six months of incarceration and $2500.00 fines if convicted.

Class 6 Felonies are charged if the disorderly conduct involves a firearm. Disorderly Conduct Felony sentencing includes maximum penalties of up to one year in state prison, fines and fees, and a felony criminal record.
Arizona Disorderly Conduct Laws
Arizona Disorderly Conduct Laws are found in Title 13 of Arizona Criminal Code ARS 13-2904. An outline and summary of the law is shown below:

A person can be charged with disorderly conduct when the following applies to their conduct:
1) “With intent” someone disturbs another person, business, or other entities’ peace: or
2) “With knowledge”, of their actions, a person engages in the following behavior (s):

• Fighting; or other disruptive behavior;
• Loud music or other disruptive noise especially late evening or early am hours;
• Using offensive, disturbing, abusive language or gestures that provoke immediate retaliation by another party;
• Disruption or disturbance that lasts for an extended period of time;
• Disrupting person (s) with the intent to prevent or distract them from engaging in a lawful meeting or gathering;
• Disobedience of a lawful order to dismiss, evacuate or remove one’s self from a premises or area, for purposes of public safety; imminent danger; fire, flood, or other hazard or emergency;
• Unlawful discharge of a firearm; reckless display of a gun or other dangerous weapon.

Criminal Defense for Gilbert AZ Disorderly Conduct Charges
Good criminal attorneys who defend criminal charges in Gilbert AZ challenge disorderly conduct charges frequently. They often can get them dismissed due to their subjective nature of disorderly conduct charges. Depending on the circumstances, many effective defenses can be used by good criminal defense lawyers to challenge unjust disorderly conduct charges. You should contact a criminal lawyer who defends disorderly conduct charges in Gilbert before pleading guilty to these charges. They will discuss your charges and provide you with your defense options.

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“Arrests for Disorderly Conduct in Tempe AZ are not always lawful….Why Good Tempe criminal defense lawyers often get disorderly conduct charges dismissed.”

Tempe Disorderly Conduct Charges
“Disorderly conduct charges”, also called “disturbing the peace” are common in Tempe. But frequency makes them no less serious. An experienced Tempe criminal attorney will tell you they should be taken seriously due to their consequences if convicted.

Arizona Disorderly Conduct Penalties
Circumstances surrounding the charges dictate if the disorderly conduct charges will be brought as a felony or misdemeanor. Disorderly conduct charges are usually brought as Class 1 Misdemeanors. This is the highest level of Arizona Misdemeanors. Class 1 Misdemeanors convictions carry a maximum sentence of 6 months in jail or prison and up to $2500.00 fines.

Disorderly Conduct charges in Tempe AZ bought as Class 6 Felonies are charged if the disorderly conduct involves a firearm. Disorderly Conduct Felony Charges carry maximum penalties of one year in prison, along with fines, fees, a long term felony criminal record; and anything else the court deems necessary.

Disorderly Conduct Laws in Tempe AZ
Arizona Disorderly Conduct Laws are outlined under ARS 13-2904 Arizona Criminal Code, Title 13. For the readers convenience below is the law paraphrased, and explained for discussion:
A person can be charged with the crime of disorderly conduct under the following circumstances:
1) “with intent” of disturbing another person (s) peace or disruption of their business: or
2) ” with knowledge” of doing so, that person engages in one or more of the following:

• Fights, altercation. or other disruptive behavior;
• Unreasonably loud or disruptive noise or music;
• Offensive or abusive language or gestures which provoke another person immediately retaliate;
• Disruption or commotion lasting for an extended period of time or any physical or verbal disturbing display with the intent to prevent or distract a lawful gathering, or meeting;
• Failure to obey or adhere to a lawful or civil order to leave a premises or area issued for purposes of public safety risk of danger or peril such as fire; or other imminent hazard or emergency;
• Reckless display or discharge of a firearm, or other deadly weapon.
Defenses for Tempe AZ Disorderly Conduct Charges
Experienced Tempe criminal defense firms often challenge disorderly conduct charges due to their subjectivity. Their legal arguments often result in dismissal of the charges. There are many defenses that can be used to combat unjust disorderly conduct charges. Depending on the circumstances one or more of the following defenses categories may be used (Defense list not all inclusive):
• “Justification” Defenses; Self-defense; the accused was protecting a defenseless person being attacked; the accused’s conduct was an immediate reaction to being provoked, or threatened;
• “Affirmative” Defenses; A fact that prevents the prosecution from being able to prosecute the charge: Charges being brought in the wrong jurisdiction; charges were not brought within the state’s time limit for certain criminal offenses; the accused was mentally ill, and did not “intend” to cause the disruption;
• “Reasonable Doubt” Defenses; Credible and trust worthy eye witnesses have conflicting accounts of the event from the Police officer’s account; the prosecution is unable to prove beyond a “reasonable doubt” that a crime was committed by the accused; or there is no evidence, no witnesses, or no complaints made of a disturbance caused by the accused; ;
• “Violation of Constitutional Rights” Defenses; Right to free speech, no abusive or offensive language was used; right to assemble lawfully and peacefully; freedom to practice faith or religion without disturbance.
Why Police Make Arrests for Disorderly Conduct in Tempe
Those charged or arrested are often confused as to why they were arrested for disorderly conduct. In most cases, it has less to do with what they did, and more to do with what the police could not do. Most Tempe criminal defense attorneys agree that it is an overused charged. The police generally use it as a “catch-all” of charges, when they don’t know what else to charge someone with, but want to make an arrest. Charges sometimes follow a warning by police, but a warning by police is not required.

The most common reasons charges or arrests for disorderly conduct is Tempe is for the following reasons:
1) Police are fed-up or annoyed with you;
2) Police have no other appropriate charge to use;
3) Police feel compelled to make an arrest or charge because complaints continue despite warnings; and/or the police have to return to the scene more than once;
4) Police felt that you disrespected them or that you were not being cooperative;
5) Police believed your actions were deliberate, and intended.

Always consult an experienced criminal lawyer to defend your Tempe disorderly conduct charges. Just because you were charged with disorderly conduct does not mean the arrest was lawful.

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“How good defense Attorneys in Phoenix help you avoid self-incrimination after an arrest for Phoenix DUI or Criminal Charges”

Experienced Phoenix Criminal Lawyers may disagree on a variety of topics related to criminal defense. But one thing good criminal defense lawyers will always agree on, is that you preserve your “right to remain silent” and “your right to an attorney”.

Following your arrest for Phoenix DUI or criminal charges you should not agree to be interrogated or answer any questions regarding your guilt or innocence or any other facts surrounding the Phoenix Criminal or DUI charges, until and unless your Phoenix criminal defense lawyer or Phoenix DUI Attorney is present.

An arrest for Phoenix DUI or criminal charges is a traumatic ordeal. If you can remember nothing else, once you have been arrested or taken into custody, you must remember to “Remain Silent”. Do not agree to answer questions or to be interrogated about the criminal charges without your Phoenix Defense Attorney present. Following a Phoenix DUI arrest or arrest for any other Criminal Charges, you may feel that everything is out side of your control. But there are two things that will remain within your control, unless you voluntarily give up control or waive your rights:

1. Your Right to an Attorney; and
2. Your Right to Remain Silent
At the point that you are arrested, hand cuffed and taken into custody, the Phoenix Police have already made up their minds to arrest you and take you into custody. Beware, the police are taking notes of your every action and word. The Phoenix Police work closely with the Arizona Prosecution to get a conviction. So they will use whatever you do and against you if they can. There is no benefit to allowing yourself to be interrogated or questioned following your arrest or detention for the criminal or DUI charges. It can only detriment your defense. The Phoenix Police and Arizona Prosecution may appear to be sincere. They would like you to believe that their motive to “help” you in your defense. Not so – Don’t buy it. Their job is to convict you, not defend you.

You will make the Arizona Prosecution’s job easier to convict you of the crime if you allow yourself to be interrogated or questioned in absence of your Phoenix Defense Lawyer. The Police and Prosecution are elated when defendants give them narratives or allow themselves to be interrogated without their Phoenix defense attorney present following their arrest. Any information they obtain from you will be used to strengthen their case against you in order to get a conviction. You do not have to help them convict you.

Phoenix DUI and Criminal Defense Lawyers in Arizona
As soon as reasonably possible, following your arrest, you should retain representation of a private practice Phoenix DUI lawyer or Phoenix criminal defense attorney. A good Phoenix DUI lawyer, who defends Criminal and DUI charges on a regular basis, will act as a barrier between you and the Phoenix police/prosecution. An experienced criminal defense attorney will make sure your constitutional rights are protected; make sure you are treated fairly; be present during any interrogations in a more controlled environment to protect you from unfair questioning; object to or provide guidance on whether or not you are required to answer certain questions that may incriminate you or harm your defense; and begin tailoring and building a strong defense on your behalf. A good Phoenix criminal attorney or Phoenix DUI lawyer will make every effort to get your charges dismissed, in whole or in part, or reduced. Retaining an experienced Phoenix DUI attorney or criminal defense lawyer is by far, your best chance of getting your charges dismissed, or the otherwise best possible outcome in your case.

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Don’t Plead “Guilty” to a Chandler DUI or Criminal Charge before Consulting a Good Chandler DUI and Criminal Attorney… Good criminal defense attorneys may be able to use certain defenses that may lead to a dismissal of your charges.

Chandler DUI or Criminal Charge – Arraignments – What to Plea
Among other reasons, the primary reason for an Arraignment is to inform the court of how you wish to plea. It is never a good idea to plead guilty to any Arizona crime or DUI or criminal charge before consulting a DUI or criminal defense attorney. Arizona has some of the toughest DUI and criminal laws and penalties in the country. You should retain an experienced AZ DUI and criminal attorney to defend you. Good criminal defense attorneys may be able to use certain defenses that may lead to a reduction or dismissal of your criminal charges. In the least you should consult a Chandler DUI or Criminal defense lawyer to get information about your charges, consequences of a guilty plea and your defense options.

Criminal Court – Arraignment for Chandler AZ Charges
For Chandler criminal or DUI charges, you will be given a complaint at some point following your arrest (if in custody) or a summons will be delivered to you (if you are not in custody). It will contain information concerning location, date and time you are required to appear at criminal court for your Arraignment.
The court location for where you will be required to appear is generally determined by the nature of the charges, and jurisdiction where you were charged. Most felony arraignments are held in Arizona Superior Courts. Most misdemeanors are held in Arizona Justice Courts. However, some felonies can initially begin in a lower court such as Arizona justice courts.

Arraignment: “Failure to Appear”- Chandler DUI or criminal charges
If you have not retained a DUI or criminal defense firm, you must appear at the court location, date, and time designated. If you “fail to appear”, a warrant may be issued for your arrest under criminal code:

1) “A.R.S. 13-2506 in the second degree; classification” Failure to appear for Misdemeanor Charges;
2) “A.R.S. 13-2507 in the first degree; classification” Failure to appear for Felony Charges
If you have retained a Chandler DUI or criminal defense attorney, they will give you further instructions. In many cases your defense attorney can vacate the arraignment date, through alternative legal channels so you do not have to appear in person.

What Happens at an Arraignment in Criminal Court
At your arraignment 1) the Judge will confirm your address, identity; 2) explain your rights; 3) read your formal charges; 4) advise you of the potential range of penalties if convicted; 5) find out if you plan to retain a criminal defense attorney; 6) and how you wish to plead to the DUI or criminal charge(s).

Types of Pleas that You Can Entered at Your Arraignment
There are three possible pleas to a criminal or DUI charge:
“Not Guilty” – This means that you are denying guilt. In this case, the burden of proof is with prosecution to prove your guilt of the criminal charges against you. If you enter a plea of not guilty on your arraignment date, the Judge will set your case for either a pre-trial conference or a formal trial date.

“Guilty” – You admit or agreeing that you committed the act charged; that the act is prohibited by law; and that you have no legal defense for your act. The Chandler AZ Court judge will proceed with your sentencing at this time. For felonies a future date and time will be set for your sentencing hearing.

“No Contest” – This means you are not admitting you are guilty; but that you also do not wish to challenge the charges or evidence at a trial; and you will accept the conviction, sentencing and punishments of the criminal charge. The judge will proceed with your sentencing at this time. For felonies a future date and time will be set for your sentencing hearing.

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AZ Criminal Defense Lawyer | Felony | Misdemeanor | AZ DUI Defense

Q. What is the Difference between a Misdemeanor and Felony in Arizona?

A. The main differences between an Arizona Misdemeanor and Felony involve the severity and nature of the crime; and of the severity and nature of the penalties. Some differences include the following:

1) Felonies are usually more serious crimes than misdemeanors; Examples of felonies include such offenses as aggravated assault, homicide, sexual abuse or rape crimes, arson, aggravated DUI, kidnapping, illegal drug sales, drug smuggling, drug manufacturing, serious drug charges and more. Felony penalties are far more severe, and usually result in life long adverse consequences if convicted. Felonies usually carry a minimum sentence of 12 months or more; Felony Charges are classified from Class 1 to Class 6, with the least severe Class 6 and the most severe, categorized as Class 1 felonies. Class 1 felonies carry sentences that range from 25 years to life in prison or a death penalty. These are reserved for the most serious of charges such as homicide.

2) Misdemeanor charges are generally less serious. Examples include criminal trespassing, theft of property below a certain value, non-aggravated DUI, underage drinking, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of Marijuana for personal use, and more. In addition to other penalties including fines, fees, costs, probation, and other punishments, they carry maximum jail sentences of less than one year;
Q. Does the Sentencing by the Judge differ with Felonies verses Misdemeanors?
A. Yes. If convicted of misdemeanor charges, the judge will usually make a determination of sentencing on the same day as the conviction of the guilty verdict, by trial or guilty plea by defendant.

For Arizona felony convictions, the judge usually requests a pre-sentence report to be completed and will schedule sentencing for generally 30 days or following the guilty verdict. You have the right to have your views included in the pre-sentence report. The defendant has the right to complete a Victim Impact Statement questionnaire or letter to be included in the pre-sentence report for the judge to review.

Q. Which Court will I need to go to if charged with a Felony or Misdemeanor in Arizona?
A. The court which a case will be heard should be documented on the complaint you received at the time you were charged, or following your arrest. It will include the name of the court, date, and time, for which you will be required to appear.

In general, Misdemeanor charges are usually handled in the Arizona Justice, Municipal or City Courts where the charges for issued. For example, if you live in Tempe Arizona, but you received a non-aggravated DUI charge in Phoenix AZ your case will be schedule for hearing in Phoenix Arizona.

Felony Charges in Arizona are usually handled in Superior court. However felony preliminary hearings can sometimes be held in the lower courts.

Q. Who Should I Hire to Defend Me for Felony for Arizona Misdemeanor Charges?
A. If you face either a criminal misdemeanor or felony charges, you should contact a licensed AZ DUI or AZ Criminal Defense Attorney as soon as possible. Most criminal lawyers defend both Felony and Misdemeanor DUI charges. Start with consulting an experienced criminal attorney who defends charges regularly in the city or jurisdiction where your received the charges. They will provide you with information concerning the charges and your defense options. Most criminal and DUI attorneys will provide you with a free consultation by phone or in person at their discretion.

Q. What Should I look for to find a good Felony or Misdemeanor Defense Lawyer?
A. In Arizona, both Felony and Misdemeanor Charges are serious. A good DUI & Criminal Defense Attorney should have years of DUI and criminal defense experience and a significant amount of trial experience. Many of the best criminal defense attorneys in Arizona are former prosecutors. This provides you with an advantage for your defense for many reasons: they are familiar with the courts, judges, prosecution, procedures, and the entire criminal justice processes. You want a DUI or criminal lawyer up to date on current laws and changing legislation in Arizona relating to criminal and DUI charges. Make sure your Attorney will be accessible and open to direct communication for answers to any and all questions you may have. A proven Arizona criminal lawyer will do everything possible to attempt to get your charges dismissed, reduced or the otherwise best outcome in your case.

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