Types of Criminal Charges
Illinois Criminal Defense Attorneys
If you have been arrested or charged with a crime, you are very likely concerned with the fines, possible jail time and other consequences you may be facing. Understanding the classification of the charge against you is the first step towards determining the potential penalties if you are convicted.
What is the difference between a felony and a misdemeanor?
Simply put the line between a felony charge and a misdemeanor charge (both in Illinois and nationally) is that with a felony charge you are sentenced to more than one year in jail and a misdemeanor carries a maximum jail sentence of 364 days. Whether you are charged with a misdemeanor or a felony it will lead to you having a criminal record.
There are three classes of misdemeanor charges:
Class A Misdemeanors:
A Class A Misdemeanor is the most serious type of misdemeanor charge; the sentence for a class A misdemeanor can include up to 364 days in jail and / or a fine of up to $2,500. Examples of crimes that would be Class A Misdemeanors are as follows:
- Aggravated Assault
- Damage to Property
- Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
- Endangering the Life or Health of a Child
- Prostitution / Solicitation
- Some types of Theft
- Aggravated Speeding 35 mph or more over the posted speed limit
Class B Misdemeanors:
Sentencing for a Class B Misdemeanor charge can include up to 180 days in jail and / or fines of up to $1,500. Examples of Class B Misdemeanor charges include:
- Certain types of Assault
- Aggravated Speeding (26-34 mph over the posted speed limit)
Class C Misdemeanors
Class C Misdemeanors are relatively minor charges but can still result in up to 30 days in jail and or fines of up to $1,500. Some examples include:
- Certain types of Assault Charges
- Disorderly Conduct
There are five tiers or classes of felonies in Illinois, defined by the time of incarceration in a State Penitentiary. While the fines for felonies can range, the fines of all five classes of felony are defined as "up to $25,000".
Class X Felony
Minimum Sentence - 6 Years -- Maximum Sentence - 30 Years. Example charges include:
- Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault.
- Armed Robbery
- Home Invasion
- Aggravated Arson
- Theft over $1,000,000
Class 1 Felony
Minimum Sentence - 4 Years -- Maximum Sentence - 15 Years. Example charges include:
- Criminal Sexual Assault
- Theft Over $100,000 and not exceeding $500,000
Class 2 Felony
Minimum Sentence - 3 Years -- Maximum Sentence - 7 Years. Example charges include:
- Aggravated Domestic Battery
- Theft of $10,000 and not exceeding $100,000
Class 3 Felony
Minimum Sentence - 2 Years -- Maximum Sentence - 5 Years. Example charges include:
- Aggravated Battery
- Theft Between $500 and $10,000
Class 4 Felony
Minimum Sentence - 1 Year -- Maximum Sentence - 3 Years. Example charges include:
- Aggravated Assault
- Aggravated DUI
Helping You Understand the Charges Against You
Regardless of whether you have been charged with a felony or a misdemeanor, it's critical that you have an effective advocate on your side pursuing your best interests. Don't make a mistake that could haunt you for years to come. We will fight to minimize the effects of your criminal charges. Call 773.720.9736 or contact us online today.