Misdemeanor Charges and Penalties in Virginia

In Virginia, if you commit any crime or if you are accused of any crime, then your first concern is always the charges you are going to face; whether it’s going to be a felony crime or a misdemeanor charge on you. That’s how Virginia has classified the crimes and its charges. Serious crimes fall into the category of a Felony which is six in numbers and has different charges for each, can lead you to jail for up to 20 years and the fine can go as high as $100,000. Whereas, Misdemeanor charges are less harsh and will only put you in local jail at max.

What is Misdemeanor Charge?

Compared to a felony crime or charge, misdemeanor charge or crime is less severe, if both are compared to each other. Misdemeanor charges are usually defined as “smaller criminal” act. Although Misdemeanor is less harsh than felonies, there are infractions below Misdemeanor charges. Once you are charged with any misdemeanor charge, you are left with an option to plead your guilty or not guilty and fight for the case. Another way is to accept the charges and look for the lesser charges, fines or penalties ordered by the Court. Misdemeanor charges are classified into four different classes. All four classes have different penalties and fines; depends on the crime a person commits. All misdemeanor charges are for different crimes, they might contain same penalties, but the crimes have been classified into four different categories. What are they? What crimes do they contain? Here is the list of the following misdemeanor charges and the crimes involved;

  1. Class 1 Misdemeanors

As per the felonies, Misdemeanor holds the same classification of the categories. Number 1 is the most serious, and then it goes less harsh and less severe with charges, penalties, and fines. Class 1 misdemeanor can be punished by:

  • Maximum 12 months in jail
  • $2,500 fine
  • Can be charged with both

What crimes can lead you to be charged with Class 1 Misdemeanor? Well, carrying a non-licensed gun or without a permit can be a big issue and class 1 misdemeanor is directly applicable to the person. Domestic violence is also included in the class 1 category and can be punished by the mentioned charges.

  1. Class 2 Misdemeanors

Unlike Class 1 punishments, Class 2 Misdemeanors have less harsh penalties or charges.

  • Maximum 6 months in jail
  • $1,000 maximum fine
  • Can be charged with both

What crimes fall under class 2 misdemeanors? Reckless driving is the most common issue which happens in Virginia, falls into the category of Misdemeanors. Another crime is to carry drug Paraphernalia, falls under the same category.

  1. Class 3 Misdemeanors

Class 3 misdemeanors contain the following crimes under the banner:

  • Unintentional Damage to Property or Monuments

Class 3 doesn’t have any jail period. An individual can only pay for the fine and walk forward. $500 maximum of the fine can be charged if you commit the class 3 misdemeanor crime.

  1. Class 4 Misdemeanors

Class 4 is the least harsh or severe category there is, and also the last. There isn’t much harsh penalties or charges, and also no jail time like Class 3.

  • Public Intoxication
  • Drinking While Driving

These two crimes fall under the category of class 4 misdemeanors. It can lead you to the maximum fine of $250.