Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Minnesota Criminal Defense FAQS

As an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney, I gets questions - lots and lots of questions.  To save you some time - and money - here are some answers to those most frequently asked.

What type of crime have I been charged with?

There are four different levels of offenses in the State of Minnesota: Petty Misdemeanors, Misdemeanors, Gross Misdemeanors, and Felonys. These are best identified by the possible sentence you could receive if you were convicted of one of these offense.

  • A Petty Misdemeanor is a non-criminal offense punishable only by a maximum $300 fine.
  • A Misdemeanor is punishable by up to 90 days in jail, and/or a $1000 fine.
  • A Gross Misdemeanor is punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a $3000 fine.
  • A Felony is punishable by over one year in prison and/or more than a $3000 fine.

I have been charged with a crime. What are my rights?

Your number one right is to have an attorney represent you.

Short of offering your name and date of birth, you do not (let me repeat that: DO NOT) have to talk to the police about the crime you have been charged with. If you choose to talk to police you have a right to have an attorney with you when you do so. An experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney can assist you in making that decision.

What will happen if I am convicted?

If you are convicted of a crime the court will impose a sentence that may include any of the following:

  • Jail or prison time
  • Fines
  • Community Service
  • Electronic Home Monitoring
  • Probation conditions, such as:
    o No-contact orders
    o Programming and/or Education requirements (such as: Anger Management, DWI Education, MADD Victim Impact Panel Attendance, etc.)
    o Abstinence from chemical use (alcohol and drugs)

In addition to jail time and fines, there are other possible consequences (collateral consequences) if you plead guilty or are found guilty at a trial.

  • Traffic offenses and DWI offenses may result in your driver’s license being suspended or revoked.
  • If you are convicted of a felony, you will not be allowed to possess a firearm under state and federal law.
  • Conviction of certain offenses can require you to register with the State as a predatory offender.
  • Conviction of certain offenses may result in suspension or revocation of certain professional licenses.

What can a criminal defense attorney do for me?

Not ot put too fine a point on it but the legal system is complicated and confusing. An experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney, such myself:

  • Represent you while your case is being investigated and try to prevent criminal charges
  • Challenge evidence against you and make sure illegally obtained evidence or inadmissible evidence is not used at your trial
  • Determine whether you have any legal defenses to the crime you have been charged with that could result in the charges being dismissed or an acquittal at trial.
  • Negotiate with the prosecutor to get you the best outcome possible if you decide to plead guilty to the charges.
If you even think you might need a lawyer - feel free to call the Rolloff Law Office and set up a free consultation.  Call today: (612) 234-116

1 comment: