Misdemeanor

What is a Misdemeanor crime?
lion statuteA “Misdemeanor” is a crime for which a sentence of 90 days or less, or a fine of up to $1,000, or both, may be imposed.  Minnesota Statutes Section 609.02, subd. 3.  It is the least serious level of crime.  (A petty misdemeanor is defined as not a crime.)  Sometimes we use the term “simple Misdemeanor” to distinguish from a Gross (big) Misdemeanor.

What is a Misdemeanor conviction?
A Misdemeanor level conviction can result from a case where the defendant was adjudicated guilty after a guilty plea or verdict to a felony, gross misdemeanor, or misdemeanor offense.  This is based on Minnesota Statutes Section 609.13 (2017), subd. 3:

Subd. 3.  Misdemeanors.  If a defendant is convicted of a misdemeanor and is sentenced, or if the imposition of sentence is stayed, and the defendant is thereafter discharged without sentence, the conviction is deemed to be for a misdemeanor for purposes of determining the penalty for a subsequent offense.

As discussed on the felony and gross misdemeanor pages here, however, a misdemeanor level conviction that resulted from a guilty plea or verdict on a felony charge, may still bring with it certain felony-type consequences.

Can a traffic violation be a misdemeanor?
Every level of crime can be traffic, drivers license or motor vehicle related.   Criminal Vehicular Operation is typically a felony, though can be charged as a Gross Misdemeanor, for example.  A Speeding Ticket can be charged as a misdemeanor, even though in most cases it is charged as a petty misdemeanor, to give another example.

Regardless of level of offense, any drivers license, driving or motor vehicle related offense or violation will be certified by the Court to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety for notation on the person’s drivers license record and potential revocation or other action against the drivers license.

Question?  Call Defense Attorney Thomas Gallagher at (612) 333-1500.