There are a significant number of criminal offenses whose corresponding penalties could negatively impact you for the remainder of your life. According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the most commonly reported crimes are assault and larceny.

If you have been charged with any criminal offense, including assault or larceny, it is imperative that you have competent legal representation from an experienced Gwinnett County criminal attorney.

Assault Charges

Simple assault is defined as attempting to cause violent injury to another person or engaging in an act that places another person in reasonable fear of imminent violence. It is a misdemeanor offense that is punishable with up to one-year incarceration and up to $1,000 fine.

If the simple assault occurred on public transportation, is initiated against a public school employee who is acting in an official capacity, or is domestic in nature, the charge is elevated to an aggravated misdemeanor.

If the victim is over the age of 65 or a pregnant woman, the offense is also increased to an aggravated misdemeanor. A high or aggravated misdemeanor is punishable with up to one-year incarceration and fines up to $5,000.

Aggravated assault is defined by Georgia statute as assault with an object or instrument that is likely to or does cause serious injury, including strangulation, for the purpose of raping, robbing, or murdering the other party. What is commonly known as a “drive-by shooting” also constitutes aggravated assault. It is punishable as a felony offense and can result in imprisonment for, at least, one, but not more than 20 years.

If the victim is over the age of 65 or a peace officer that is acting in her or his official capacity, the assault also constitutes aggravated assault. The minimum period of incarceration, for aggravated assault, when the victim is 65 or older is three years. When the victim is a peace keeper, the minimum penalty for aggravated assault is five years imprisonment which makes it important a criminal lawyer in Gwinnett County is contacted.

Theft Offenses

Larceny is defined as taking an item of value, without authorization, or unlawfully appropriating property, with intent to permanently deprive the owner of the property. In Georgia, larceny may be classified as a misdemeanor or felony offense.

When the item of value is worth less than $500, it is a misdemeanor offense. If the monetary value of the item taken exceeds $500, it is a felony offense, which is punishable with a minimum of one year and a maximum of 10 years’ incarceration.

When the item of value is taken from a merchant, the offense constitutes shoplifting and the threshold for a felony offense is lower. If the property shoplifted is valued at more than $300, or property that is valued at $100 was taken from three separate stores within Gwinnett County, in a seven-day period, the shoplifting offense constitutes a felony.

Contact a Gwinnett County Criminal Attorney Today

If you are charged with a criminal offense, whether it is a misdemeanor or felony, in Gwinnett County, it is important that you are represented by a skilled local criminal defense lawyer. An experienced Gwinnett County criminal attorney is one that is familiar with local customs and is able to create the best defense for your case based on surrounding circumstances  and the probability of success against the state’s evidence in that jurisdiction.