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What are violent crimes, and how are they penalized?

There are many different kinds of crimes that a person can commit, but none are quite as severe as violent crimes. These crimes, which include rape, assault, domestic violence and other forms of violence, are committed to threaten or injure another person. That's what makes them particularly heinous. As a result, those convicted of violent crimes are punished harshly.

Not all crimes that could be perceived as violent will be considered violent by the courts. For example, not all sex crimes are necessarily violent. Indecent exposure or prostitution may not result in a charge for a violent crime. However, crimes like rapes, sexual assault or assaults of minors are likely to draw a violent crime charge that you have to defend against.

Most violent crimes will be charged as felonies. Regardless of the violent crime, you could face a minimum of a year in jail for the act. Sometimes, if an injury is not severe, you may be able to get away with a misdemeanor instead of a felony. In that case, you might face a jail sentence of up to a year or community service with probation.

Violent crimes are all serious, but murder is the most severe. There are various degrees of murder that determine the kinds of penalties you face. If you're being charged with murder, it's necessary to begin defending yourself from the moment you realize you're accused and that you have a chance to state your side of the story. It's important that you establish that there was no intent to cause harm, which is a defining factor in any murder case.

Source: FindLaw, "Types of Violent Crimes," George Khoury, Esq., accessed July 21, 2017

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