It’s not always easy to convince a prosecutor to amend a felony charge to a misdemeanor. The prosecutor may never consider the idea. But I was again successful recently in obtaining such an amendment from the local prosecutor’s office. My client was charged with the class C felony offense of stealing. After months of meetings and discussions, the prosecutor’s office agreed to the amendment. There are several reasons why it’s important to avoid a plea of guilty to a felony. First, many employers will not hire a person with a felony conviction, especially if the employer can choose from other applicants who have not plead guilty to a felony. A person also loses certain rights in pleading guilty to a felony such as the right to vote, the right to possess a firearm, and the right to certain federal benefits. There are additional consequences to a person depending on the type of felony offense such as a conviction for driving while intoxicated and most sexual offenses.
Scott Hamblin is a shareholder at Brydon, Swearengen & England P.C. He can be contacted at either brydonlaw.com or scotthamblinlaw.com.