You messed up.
You tangled with the law and got caught. Now, you’ve been hit been with misdemeanor charges. But can you be arrested?
In Texas, the answer is yes. Your Texas arrest records can potentially haunt you for the rest of your life.
Here’s what you need to know.
What’s a Misdemeanor?
A misdemeanor is a crime that’s less serious than a felony. You won’t go to prison, but you might get sentenced to jail time. There are three different classes of misdemeanors in Texas.
- Class A: These come with heavy consequences. You can get sentenced to up to a year in jail and fined up to $4,000
- Class B: If you’re charged with a Class B, you can get fined up to $2,000 as well as sentenced to up to 180 days in jail
- Class C: This is the least serious misdemeanor charge you can face. Jail time isn’t a possibility, but you could face a fine of up to $500
If you’re a repeat offender, you face mandatory jail time.
Common Misdemeanor Crimes
Misdemeanors are significantly more common than felonies. Many people commit these crimes without realizing they’re breaking the law.
- Petty theft
- Driving while intoxicated
- Disorderly conduct
- Public drunkenness
Misdemeanor crimes are troublesome for the community but they don’t involve serious injury to a victim or major property damage.
Pleading Your Case
No matter what happened, you need a good defense. Your lawyer can present your case to the judge and jury in the best possible light. If you’re innocent, there’s even more of a reason to get a lawyer.
You might be able to get by without a lawyer if your case is minor — for example, if you’re charged with a Class C misdemeanor and it’s your first offense.
When you’re arrested, it’s common to start panicking. You’re willing to say or do anything to get yourself out of the horrible situation. However, you need to resist this urge.
Don’t try to argue yourself out of getting arrested. It won’t work and you might give the police ammo they can use against you. If an officer is debating whether to arrest you, giving a voluntary statement is a bad idea.
If you do decide to hire a lawyer, don’t settle on the first name in the phone book. Your lawyer could potentially make a huge difference in your case. You want to work with someone who you can trust and who has ample experience.
You should try to speak to at least a few different lawyers before making a final decision. Trust your gut instinct.
Sealing Yout Texas Arrest Records
Anyone can look up Texas arrest records. That’s why a strong defense is so important. If you’re convicted of a misdemeanor, you may have to deal with the repercussions for the rest of your life.
If you can get the record sealed, it’s almost always worth it to do so.
Keep reading our blog for more important legal information.