Solano County Criminal Lawyer
Facing any type of criminal charge can be stressful, and a conviction could have lifelong implications. Additionally, the idea of ongoing prosecution oftentimes scares the accused into prematurely pleading guilty or nolo contendere to crimes for which the accused has a strong defense.
Do not let law enforcement officials intimidate you into waiving your right to defend yourself against criminal accusations. Consulting with a Solano County criminal lawyer may reveal you have constitutional, procedural, or substantive defenses to the charges against you. By working with an accomplished defense attorney, you could greatly improve your chances of a favorable resolution.
Distinguishing Felonies from Misdemeanors in Solano County
California Penal Code § 17(a) establishes three types of crimes: felonies, misdemeanors, and infractions. Offenses punishable by death or imprisonment of more than one year are felonies, and offenses punishable with less than a year imprisonment are often misdemeanors. Infractions, such as speeding tickets, do not carry jail time.
Felony convictions carry the most serious direct and indirect consequences. Convicted felons often struggle to find work, obtain financing, qualify for public benefits, and travel. Examples of felony charges include:
- Murder ( Pen. Code § 187)
- Manslaughter ( Pen. Code § 192)
- Rape ( Pen. Code § 261)
- Armed Robbery ( Pen. Code § 211)
- Child Abuse and Neglect ( Pen. Code § 273d)
- Aggravated Assault & Battery ( Pen. Code § 243(d))
- Money Laundering ( Pen. Code § 186.9)
Experienced criminal defense counsel can help convince Solano County prosecutors to reduce felony charges to misdemeanor offenses in exchange for a guilty plea.
Potential Penalties for Criminal Convictions
Judges generally have discretion to decide punishment after a guilty plea or verdict. Some crimes mandate a certain minimum sentence while others give judges sentencing options. Other offenses have no direct sentencing guidelines. The unique facts of each case, including any aggravating and mitigating factors, generally determine the overall sentence.
Offenders convicted of felony offenses commonly face jail time, fines, probation, and property forfeiture. First-time misdemeanor offenders may avoid imprisonment in Solano County jail if they qualify for alternative sentencing with the help of a dedicated defense attorney. Alternatives to incarceration include pre-trial diversion for drug treatment under Cal. Pen. Code. § 1000 or § 1210.1 (Prop. 36), house arrest, probation, community service, or electronic monitoring.
The Benefits of Retaining Private Criminal Defense Counsel
Anyone accused of a crime in Solano County should retain a criminal defense attorney. Low-income defendants charged with misdemeanor or felony-level offenses are entitled to have a lawyer appointed for them pursuant to the Fifth and Sixth Amendments to the United States Constitution. Typically, this means the court will assign the public defender’s office to their case.
Solano County public defenders serve nearly 20,000 clients each year. This often means less time spent investigating and defending each individual case. Private defense attorneys often dedicate considerable time and resources to obtaining the best possible result for their clients. They recognize common prosecution tactics designed to scare defendants into unfavorable plea deals and might discover constitutional violations during the investigation and indictment process that could get the charges dismissed.
Reach Out to a Solano County Criminal Attorney Right Away
It is vital to have skilled defense counsel throughout a criminal investigation. Common missteps like speaking with the police , consenting to a search, or waiving other critical rights will often lead to negative consequences in the long run. If you have been accused of a crime, work closely with a legal team dedicated to your defense who can advise you along the way.
Calling an experienced Solano County criminal lawyer immediately could maximize the benefits of retaining counsel. Schedule a criminal defense case review today.