Being Charged with a Misdemeanor under Indiana Criminal Law

Misdemeanors in Indiana are classified as either a Class C, Class B, or Class A. Each particular Class of crime in Indiana carries with it a certain range of penalties. For example a Class C misdemeanor carries a possible jail penalty of up to 60 days, a Class B up to 180 days, and a Class A up to 365 days in jail.

However, being charged and doing jail time are two different things. First, with any criminal case you will start off by letting the court know whether or not you intend to hire private counsel or seek the appointment of a public defender. You will likely receive a different court date at that point, but this can vary from county to county in Indiana.

Once you have an attorney on your case, he or she will review the charges, the police report, and any additional evidence that the State may have against you. From there, your attorney will likely negotiate a possible plea deal with the State. But, this may also be the same point where your attorney sets your case for trial.

If your criminal misdemeanor case is set for a trial it will likely be set for a bench trial, meaning a the judge will here the facts of your case and make a determination of whether the State proved the case beyond a reasonable doubt. However, you can request a jury trial and have your case hward by a jury. In Indiana this will be a six person jury.

If you are convicted then you will be sentenced. The sentence could be a potential jail term, but it could also be a fine or possible term of probation.

This is only a brief expectation of the process of a misdemeanor case in Indiana. If you are facing a misdemeanor case in South Bend, contact my office today to discuss your options.