Most people are aware of the terms “misdemeanor” and “felony,” but you might not be aware of how crimes are classified or the different penalties for these classifications. What classifications might a crime fall under in Wisconsin law?
What are the classifications of misdemeanors?
Misdemeanors are generally less serious crimes. The law classifies misdemeanor offenses under different categories. The penalties for these offenses include:
- Class C misdemeanor — Fines up to $500 and up to 30 days in jail
- Class B misdemeanor — Fines up to $1,000 and up to 90 days in jail
- Class A misdemeanor — Fines up to $10,000 and up to 9 months in jail
What are the classifications of felonies?
Felonies are generally more serious crimes, and convictions lead to more serious penalties. The law classifies these offenses into 9 classes depending on the nature of the crime. The penalties for each of the nine classes of felonies are:
- Class I felony — Fines up to $10,000 and up to 3 years and 6 months in prison
- Class H felony — Fines up to $10,000 and up to 6 years in prison
- Class G felony — Fines up to $25,000 and up to 10 years in prison
- Class F felony — Fines up to $25,000 and up to 12 years and 6 months in prison
- Class E felony — Fines up to $50,000 and up to 15 years in prison
- Class D felony — Fines of up to $100,000 and up to 25 years in prison
- Class C felony — Fines up to $100,000 in fines and up to 40 years in prison
- Class B felony — Up to 60 years in prison
- Class A felony — Life in prison
What crimes are misdemeanors and which are felonies?
Whether a crime is a felony or a misdemeanor depends on the severity of the crime, and many crimes can be either misdemeanors or felonies depending on the details of the crime. For example, the authorities can charge a person with theft either as a misdemeanor or as a felony. For property worth less than $2,500, theft is a Class A misdemeanor. For theft of more valuable property, the authorities would charge a person with a felony, up to a Class F felony for charges involving property worth more than $100,000.
While the class of a crime and the penalties involved can vary, any criminal charge is a serious matter. Those facing any level of criminal charge should take steps to protect themselves and their rights.