Understanding Georgia felony crimes helps you navigate the court system should you or someone you know be facing a felony charge. Georgia state legislature defines the various crimes and processes used in sentencing individuals.
The following will provide the essential information related to Georgia felony crimes so that you and your attorney can determine the best options for your needs when avoiding hefty sentences and fines.
FELONIES IN GEORGIA
Under Georgia state law, those crimes that can result in a minimum of one year’s imprisonment are classified as felonies. Less significant misdemeanors are typically met with less time, which is served in local or county jails.
Georgia uses this distinction to classify crimes, as opposed to the classifications used by other states that include “Class 1” or “Class A” felonies. This allows Georgia courts to sentence individuals based on the unique factors related to their cases.
Georgia felony crimes are typically classified by degree (i.e., first-, second, and third-degree).
The following are examples of felonies under Georgia state law:
- Armed robbery
Murder is punishable by death in the state of Georgia, while kidnapping and robbery can result in 10 to 25 years imprisonment. Life sentences can also be applied in some rape convictions.
In addition, significant fines may be applied alongside prison sentences for Georgia felonies.
FELONY ARRESTS IN GEORGIA
Felony arrests are the first step in Georgia’s felony process. A police officer must first demonstrate probable cause to obtain a search warrant. This indicates to the courts that there is some reason to indicate that an individual is connected to a felony crime.
But a search may also be conducted as part of an initial arrest without a warrant in some cases.
Individuals arrested for felonies have rights that protect them once an arrest has been made. Having an attorney is the first right that an individual usually exercises upon being arrested for a felony.
Individuals charged with felonies are given an opportunity to enter a plea to the courts during their arraignment. Having a skilled attorney with experience in Georgia felony crimes can help you through this process.
The plea you make must be carefully considered so that you understand what to expect as you move forward. You may enter a guilty, not guilty, no contest, or mute plea.
A plea of “no contest” neither admits to nor disputes the felony charge while a mute plea forces the courts to enter your plea of “not guilty”. Understanding the consequences of your plea is critical to overcoming a felony charge.
Felony cases move to a trial when the accused doesn’t admit to taking part in the stated crime. Trial dates are set by the court, and a speedy trial demand may be made on your behalf in order to expedite the process.
Also, bench and jury trials are available and may provide certain advantages when facing a felony charge. Consulting with your attorney ensures that you get the right trial to avoid significant fines and prison sentences.
Georgia felony crimes can result in a minimum of one year’s imprisonment. More serious crimes can lead to life terms or the death penalty. When facing a felony charge, you must have the right legal resources to understand what decision will benefit your case.
This provides you with the proper legal defense to protect your rights under the court of law and ensures that all options are presented to you and chosen with your best interests in mind.