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How Bumgarner Law Can Help with Felony Charges

When facing felony charges, the stakes are incredibly high. Felonies are considered the most severe category of crimes, significantly more serious than misdemeanors or infractions. Understanding the intricacies of felony charges is crucial for anyone implicated in such serious legal matters. Let’s explore their potential consequences, and illustrate how expert legal defense by a felony criminal lawyer can make a pivotal difference.

What Are Felony Charges?

Felony charges encompass a range of serious crimes that carry significant legal repercussions. By definition, a felony is a crime typically punishable by more than one year in prison or by death. These charges are reserved for the most severe offenses in the criminal justice system, reflecting their grave nature and the profound impact they have on victims and communities.

Examples of Common Felonies
  • Aggravated Assault: An attack intended to cause severe bodily harm or death, often involving a weapon.
  • Drug Trafficking: The illegal production, distribution, or sale of controlled substances on a large scale.
  • Grand Theft: The theft of property or money over a value specified by law, typically involving significant amounts.
  • Murder: The unlawful killing of another person with intent.

Legal Implications of a Felony Conviction

The immediate legal consequences of a felony conviction are severe and can include lengthy terms of imprisonment in state or federal facilities, exorbitant fines, and the possibility of supervised release, such as probation.

The legal consequences of being convicted of a felony are severe and life-altering. They typically include:

  • Prison Time: Lengthy sentences in state or federal prison.
  • Fines: Substantial monetary penalties.
  • Probation: Periods of supervised release which involve meeting certain conditions and restrictions.

Long-Term Impacts

Beyond the court-imposed penalties, a felony conviction carries long-term repercussions that can alter one’s life trajectory. Convicted felons may lose fundamental civil rights like voting and firearm ownership. The stigma of a felony record can also severely limit employment opportunities, restrict housing options, and affect personal relationships and community standing. These collateral consequences underscore the importance of aggressive legal defense to mitigate or avoid such outcomes.

  • Loss of Civil Rights: Including the right to vote and possess firearms.
  • Employment Challenges: Difficulty in securing employment due to criminal record checks.
  • Social Stigma: Enduring personal and professional relationships issues.

Stages of the Felony Case Process

The felony case process is a multi-stage journey through the criminal justice system, beginning with an arrest or indictment and potentially ending in a trial and sentencing. Understanding each stage is vital for effective defense planning.

  • Arrest: Suspects are taken into custody based on probable cause.
  • Arraignment: Defendants are formally charged and plead guilty or not guilty.
  • Trial: Evidence is presented in court before a judge or jury to determine guilt.

Key Legal Proceedings

  • Pre-Trial Motions: Motions that can dismiss or reduce charges, suppress evidence, etc.
  • Sentencing: If convicted, the phase where punishment is determined based on the crime’s nature and the defendant’s history.

Critical to this process are the pre-trial motions, which can significantly impact the trial’s outcome. These motions might argue for the suppression of illegally obtained evidence, the dismissal of charges due to insufficient evidence, or other procedural defenses. If the case goes to trial, it culminates in either a bench trial before a judge or a jury trial, followed by sentencing if the verdict is guilty. Each of these steps offers potential avenues for legal challenges and defense strategies.

Your Rights During a Felony Case

Constitutional Rights

Every defendant in a criminal proceeding has constitutional rights designed to ensure fairness and justice. These include:

  • Right to an Attorney: You can have legal representation during the trial.
  • Right to a Jury Trial: You can have your case heard and decided by a jury of your peers.

Navigating the Justice System

Leveraging these rights effectively requires knowledge and experience in legal proceedings. An adept felony defense attorney not only understands these rights but knows how to implement them strategically to benefit their client’s case. They ensure that law enforcement and prosecutors respect these rights throughout the criminal process, providing the best possible defense against the charges.

How a Felony Criminal Lawyer Can Assist You

A felony criminal lawyer plays a crucial role in the defense of those accused of serious crimes. Their expertise spans the spectrum of criminal law, enabling them to craft a comprehensive defense strategy that addresses both the specifics of the charges and the broader implications for the defendant. From gathering evidence and interviewing witnesses to negotiating with prosecutors and arguing in court, the defense attorney is the defendant’s advocate and protector throughout the legal process.

They provide crucial services that include:

  • Legal Advice: Offering expert advice on all aspects of the case.
  • Representation: Standing for you in court, presenting evidence, and arguing on your behalf.
Areas of Assistance
  • Negotiating Plea Deals: Working with prosecutors to reach a plea agreement that minimizes penalties.
  • Handling Appeals: If the trial does not result in a favorable outcome, your lawyer can file for an appeal, potentially overturning the conviction or reducing the sentence.

Case Studies

Felony Perjury – No Unanimous Verdict

Our client was charged with Felony Perjury stemming from untruthful statements made by our client during a recorded family law hearing. Despite our client not having a criminal record, the State would only extend a felony plea offer. We took the case to trial arguing to the jury that our client’s statements were not material, and there were conflicts of interest in the family law hearing. Despite having a District Court judge as the State’s star witness and the recording of the untruthful statements played to the jury, the jury asked about jury nullification and indicated that it probably could not reach a unanimous verdict. After a conference with the prosecutor, our client was finally offered a misdemeanor with probation – saving his career and freedom.

Felony Possession with Intent to Sell and Deliver Cocaine – Chain of Custody

Our client was charged Felony Possession with Intent to Sell and Deliver Cocaine and Felony Possession with Intent to Sell and Deliver Marijuana after the search of our client’s work truck yielded cocaine and marijuana. Through our investigation, we learned several co-workers used the same work truck, some of whom were known to use the same drugs that were found. After raising issues with the State’s chain of custody and a couple of days before our trial was scheduled to start, the State dismissed all charges.

Read more criminal law case results by Bumgarner Law Firm.

Felony Charges FAQs

  • What distinguishes a felony from a misdemeanor? Felonies are more serious, often involving greater harm or threat, and carry more severe penalties.
  • Can a felony charge be reduced to a misdemeanor? Yes, often through plea negotiations or if the evidence does not support the higher charge.
  • What should I do if falsely accused of a felony? Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately to ensure your rights are protected and to begin building your defense.
  • Legal Terms for Criminal Law

Criminal Defense Lawyer in Raleigh NC

Dealing with felony charges can be daunting and intimidating. With serious potential consequences and complex legal proceedings, having an experienced felony criminal lawyer by your side is crucial. Our law firm is committed to providing robust defense and comprehensive legal support to ensure the best possible outcomes for our clients.

If you or someone you know is facing felony charges, don’t hesitate to reach out for professional help. Call us at 919-780-5808 or visit us online today for a free consultation to discuss your case and explore your legal options. We are here to help protect your rights and fight for your future.

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