Misdemeanor Defense Attorney in Dallas
Protecting Reputations & Avoiding Serious Penalties
If you or someone you care about has been arrested for a misdemeanor crime, you may not realize some of the serious repercussions and penalties you could be facing. At the Knight Law Office, our Dallas defense lawyer may be able to help you get the charges against you reduced or dismissed. Our clients have seen firsthand how an experienced attorney dedicated to the practice of criminal defense at our firm can make a difference.
We represent clients in Dallas County, Tarrant County, Collin County and Denton County as well as other locations all over North Texas. Attorney Nelson Knight’s experience spans both sides of the court room – having worked as a District Attorney, and as an aggressive criminal defense lawyer. This gives our clients a distinct advantage when it comes to building strong defensive strategies for their cases. We want to help you get an outcome on your misdemeanor crime allegations that you didn't think was possible. Get in touch with our office if you have been accused of a misdemeanor in Dallas, Texas.
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Understanding Texas Misdemeanor Charges
While not as serious as felony offenses, misdemeanor convictions can mean stiff fines and possible jail time if convicted. According to Texas law, misdemeanor offenses are divided into 3 classes: Class A Misdemeanors, Class B Misdemeanors, and Class C Misdemeanors.
Certain criminal acts may fall under one of these classifications depending on certain circumstances. For example, the misdemeanor classification for marijuana possession depends on the quantity the defendant was carrying when he or she was arrested. The classification for criminal trespass depends on who owns the property, where it was located, or whether the defendant was carrying a deadly weapon. Thefts are classified based on the value of the property or services the defendant stole.
Class A Misdemeanors
Under Texas Penal Code § 12.21, an individual who is convicted of a Class A misdemeanor can face up to 1 year in jail and a fine up to $4,000.
Under Texas law, the following crimes, among others, are classified as Class A misdemeanors:
- Assault - Tex. Penal Code §22.01(b);
- Possession of up to 28 grams of a Penalty Group 3 controlled substance – Tex. Health & Safety Code § 481.117(b);
- Delivery of up to ¼ ounces of marijuana with remuneration – Tex. Health & Safety Code § 481.120(b)(1);
- Second offenses for driving while intoxicated – Tex. Penal Code § 49.09(a);
- Burglary of a vehicle – Tex. Penal Code § 30.04(c);
- Theft between $750 and $2,499.99 – Tex. Penal Code § 31.04(e)(3);
- Credit card transaction laundering between $750 and $2,499.99 – Tex. Penal Code § 32.35(e)(3);
- Insurance claim fraud – Tex. Penal Code § 35.02;
- Forgery – Tex. Penal Code § 32.21(c);
- Criminal trespass – Tex. Penal Code § 30.05(d)(3);
- Possession of 2 to 4 ounces of marijuana – Tex. Health & Safety Code § 481.121(b)(2); and
- Prostitution – Tex. Penal Code § 43.02(c).
Class B Misdemeanors
Texas Penal Code §12.22 provides that individuals convicted of a Class B misdemeanor can face up to 180 days in jail and pay up to $2,000 in fines.
Crimes that constitute Class B Misdemeanors include, but aren’t limited to:
- Second offenses for assault against a family member – Tex. Penal Code § 22.01(c)(4)(A);
- Driving while intoxicated – Tex. Penal Code § 49.04(b);
- Possession of up to 2 ounces of marijuana – Tex. Health & Safety Code § 481.121(b)(1);
- Possession of up to 28 grams of a Penalty Group 4 controlled substance – Tex. Health & Safety Code § 481.118(b);
- Unlawful possession of dangerous drug – Tex. Health & Safety Code § 483.041(d);
- Criminal trespass – Tex. Penal Code § 30.05(d)(1); and
- First offense of prostitution – Tex. Penal Code § 43.02.
Class C Misdemeanors
Class C Misdemeanors under Texas Penal Code §12.23 are punishable by up to $500 in fines for first time offenses.
Examples of Class C Misdemeanors include:
- Assault by threat or offense contact – Tex. Penal Code § 22.01(a)(2), (3);
- Criminal trespass – Tex. Penal Code § 30.05(d)(2);
- Disorderly conduct – Tex. Penal Code §§ 42.01(a)(1) – (8), (11), (12);
- False identification as a peace officer – Tex. Penal Code § 37.12
- Public intoxication – Tex. Penal Code §49.02(c);
- Theft of less than $100 – Tex. Penal Code § 31.03(e)(1); and
- Theft of services less than $100 – Tex. Penal Code § 31.04(e)(1).
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