There are five levels of felonies in Ohio criminal law. Whether you are indicted by a Grand Jury or charged by a filing from the prosecutor is up to the prosecutor’s office. They have great discretion in how to bring your case before the court in the first place. If you contact Columbus, OH criminal attorney Peter J. Binning when it is first brought at the municipal court level, we stand a better chance of helping you avoid further proceedings.
A felony in Ohio generally means any crime for which you can be sentenced to more than six months of imprisonment. A misdemeanor is any crime for which you can be sentenced to up to six months in the local jail. Some misdemeanor convictions can, however, result in sentences up to one year at the local jail.
The determination of whether a crime is a felony is made based on the maximum sentence you could be given for that crime. The sentence you actually receive is often much less. Additionally, if you have been convicted of multiple misdemeanor offenses and your sentences were ordered to run consecutively instead of concurrently, you may end up serving longer than six months even though each offense is still a misdemeanor charge.
After the preliminary hearing a felony case the common pleas court. This is the court that will oversee a trial if you decide to take your case to a jury. The judges and prosecutors in these courts are generally more experienced in handling criminal court cases, and it is vital that you are represented by an experienced and skill Columbus, OH criminal attorney from this point forward if you were not represented in the early stages of the case.
A felony conviction often disqualifies you from holding certain jobs, is reflected on your credit report, and may restrict where and with whom you may live. The most common felony conviction disqualifications include an inability to vote until your sentence is fully served (including any probation or parole), the inability to serve on a jury, the inability to possess firearms or ammunition for certain felonies, and the inability to receive various federal assistance program benefits.
Certain felony convictions may be expunged after you have served your sentence, and the required time for expungement has passed. Not all convictions may be expunged and it is generally up to the discretion of the judge. The State may object to an expungement through the prosecutor.
If you or someone you know is facing an Ohio felony contact Columbus, OH criminal attorney Peter J. Binning now for a free, no obligation case evaluation. It is important to get a highly skilled, and experienced defense attorney on your side as soon as you realize you are under investigation or have been charged with an Ohio felony. Don’t wait, contact us now!