While any arrest is serious, there are distinctions within criminal law between crimes that are dealt with more harshly than others. Misdemeanors, as a general rule, are those arrests which carry a maximum potential sentence of One Year or less in County Jail. Felonies, in contrast, carry penalties with State Penitentiary (Department of Corrections) incarceration, from anywhere from no minimum time to Life Without Parole. They include subsequent offenses to many Misdemeanor crimes, as well as drug trafficking, violent crimes, robbery, or rape. This is certainly not an exhaustive list (see Title 21 of the Oklahoma Statutes for a complete list of Felonies).
If you have been charged with a Felony, your life and liberty is in serious jeopardy. If you are convicted you will no longer be able to vote, buy a firearm, or run for many political offices. It becomes extremely difficult to find a job, especially in this competitive economy. You can be evicted from your apartment. Finally, you may spend a number of years either under DOC supervision or incarcerated.
The process for a felony charge is complex and time consuming. It is extremely important to find an attorney who knows exactly what they are doing within this arena of the law. Basic mistakes can, and do, cost defendants dearly. This is not a time to cut corners with finances or take a risk with a 'budget' attorney. We are certainly not saying you need to mortgage the house, but a fair fee for honest hard work is required. As in any business, you get what you pay for.
I would be happy to explain the process if and when it becomes necessary. It is important to fully discuss the potential outcomes with any attorney you are considering hiring, as well as their aversion to going to trial. Not every case needs to go to a jury trial. However, having an attorney who isn't afraid to 'put on a trial' is extremely important. Beyond this, it is important to find an attorney you trust and you feel you can work with. I am direct and honest with my appraisals of client's situations, as well as potential/likely outcomes.
Please call 918.592.2300 day or night for a free consultation or to schedule a meeting to discuss your specific case. I look forward to hearing from you soon