Did you receive a misdemeanor ticket in Michigan lately? Chances are you are not alone. As mentioned in a previous post on this blog, earlier this year Michigan enacted a law that increased the number of crimes that would be penalized by a misdemeanor ticket rather than an arrest. However, you should still take misdemeanor tickets seriously.
The new law
Under the new law if a crime would lead to a jail sentence of 12 months or less, the alleged perpetrator would be eligible for a misdemeanor ticket rather than an arrest, with some exceptions for assault crimes and domestic violence. Moreover, police can still issue an arrest for those who do not follow police direction or provide their license or identification when asked. The purpose of the new law was to reduce the jail population as well as better prioritize public safety funds.
Certain misdemeanor crimes in Michigan are more serious than others. Assault crimes, domestic violence, illegal entry, child abuse, stalking and leaving the scene of a car crash are all examples of serious misdemeanors. Even minimal jail time for misdemeanors like these could impact your career and relationships. In addition, a criminal record could lead to housing loss, job loss and further negative effects.
Fighting misdemeanor charges
While the new law may seem too good to be true, it is important to know you can fight misdemeanor charges. Even seemingly minor misdemeanor charges can have life-long consequences. Fighting misdemeanor charges can help preserve your current and future reputations at work and in the community. Our firm understands these complexities and can be a useful resource.