Experienced Gross Misdemeanor Defense Lawyers in Minnesota
Some people shrug off being accused of a “gross misdemeanor” as no big deal. This is a terrible mistake and as a result you could be paying a price for the rest of your life. Unlike a simple misdemeanor such as being ticketed for DUI for the first time, a gross misdemeanor charge may be filed against you if:
Leaving the scene of an accident if there were injuries
Repeatedly violating a court order for protection or restraining order
A history of being charged with assault
Hitting or shoving a police officer
Neglecting the care of a vulnerable adult
Other similar charges that don’t raise to the felony level.
Serious Consequences for Gross Misdemeanor Convictions
The consequences for being convicted of a gross misdemeanor are serious. You can be incarcerated for up to one year and fined as much as $3,000. The conviction may also follow you for the rest of your life. It can affect getting a job, a mortgage or other loans, even being able to find customers for your business. If you want to travel, some countries won’t allow you in with a gross misdemeanor conviction on your record. Worse, if you are an immigrant who has not yet become a citizen and ICE learns of your conviction, under some circumstances it can try to deport you, separating you from your family and friends forever.
Once the police arrest you on a gross misdemeanor charge, first you will be required to attend a bail appearance. The city or county attorney prosecuting your case may ask a judge to impose significant bail, so you need an experienced and forceful advocate on your side to try to ensure that you do not stay locked up. Even if you are released on your own recognizance, you will be required to appear for future hearings and trial. These will include an arraignment where the complaint against you is explained as are your rights, which is followed by an “omnibus hearing” where the defense can challenge the evidence collected against you.
At each of these hearings you need a strong advocate who understands what constitutes admissible evidence and can move that some or all of the charges be dropped if the police collected it in a manner that violates your rights under the Constitution. Once convicted, it is extremely difficult to have it removed from your record.
Gross Misdemeanor Charges in Minnesota Can Result in Jail Time
Very few people are blasé about facing time even in a county jail. Yet being convicted for a gross misdemeanor can put you behind bars for up to one year. Remember, the police and prosecutors are not your friends no matter how relaxed and casual they seem when talking with you. It’s an act to try to catch you off-guard. They’re very good at it. This is why it is vital for you to secure an experienced gross misdemeanor lawyer in Minnesota as soon as you are arrested. Say nothing to the police without your lawyer present, and never try negotiating with a prosecutor on your own.