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6 Misdemeanor Crimes Punishable by Law You Might Not Know About

Misdemeanor Crimes

Though humankind has made significant progress during the past century, crime still plagues most parts of society. However, given its deviant nature, crime doesn’t go unpunished and leads to bitter consequences for the perpetrators. The level of such punishment varies with the gravity of the crime committed. Hence, not all crimes are equal and differ based on levels of seriousness and their classifications. The three basic kinds of crimes include felonies, misdemeanors, and infractions.

Existing at a higher level of severity than infractions and misdemeanors are felonies. These criminal offenses usually entail the gravest punishments.

Think of misdemeanors as offenses that are more serious than infractions but not on the same level as felonies. Infractions are petty crimes that necessitate no jail time but may require certain fines as punishment. In comparison, misdemeanors can involve penalties in the shape of fines and jail time. But, given their lower level of severity, the incarceration period is only up to one year. Misdemeanors can sometimes entail community service or probation.

Existing at a higher level of severity than infractions and misdemeanors are felonies. These criminal offenses usually entail the gravest punishments.

Sometimes we’re unintentionally out of compliance with the law. In such cases, even a minor traffic violation can have dire outcomes. Although some rules are common knowledge, we may not be fully aware of violating them at the moment. Imagine an officer stops you for a broken light on your vehicle. At that time, wouldn’t it be a wicked coincidence to be fined for some crime you might be committing without being aware?

Pursuing a criminology degree online can provide better insights into the classifications and ramifications of different crimes. However, here’s a small list of some misdemeanors and infractions that you may be committing without knowing:

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Street Art or Graffiti

Believe it or not, graffiti and street art are considered criminal mischief under the law. Criminal mischief can is a crime that results from the destruction of private or public property, aka vandalism. It’s a misguided general belief that graffiti is a minor offense bearing no consequences. Especially for adults having past run-ins with the law, e.g., 18 years old or above, there are severe consequences for such artistic expressions.

Expired Registration Plates

Can you guess how most people’s license plates expire? They forget to make time to submit their required dues. Regardless of the excuse, most US states don’t offer a grace period for expired vehicle registration. As soon as a tag expires, its owner is considered violating the law and will have to bear the penalty fees. Failure to pay the fees will only lead to a higher sum, accumulating with the length of the delay.

More importantly, it’s best to avoid being on the road with expired plates, which could lead to investigations for further violations.

Strolling Around Your Neighbors Property

Yes, taking a friendly stroll across your neighbor’s yard can incriminate you. It’s illegal to be on or inside someone else’s property without consent. Or perhaps it wasn’t your intention, but you violated a Protective Order. Both these situations usually fall under trespassing offenses and can incur legal penalties. If you’re in a similar situation, then it’s a good idea to find a lawyer with the know-how of such offenses.

Cycling Without Lights

Surprisingly enough, bicycle owners are subject to the same laws as motor vehicle owners. For instance, they must cycle only on the right side, stop at crosswalks, follow traffic, have functioning lights at night, and remain in the bike lanes. Failure to comply with the above laws might induce officers to pull you over. And this simple traffic stop may have profound implications. For instance, the officer might discover an illegal weapon on you or that you’re cycling under a substance’s influence. Any of these violations can put anyone behind bars.

Impersonating Other People

If you think pretending to be like your coworker for a day is a harmless prank, the law wants you to reconsider. If an individual impersonates another with malicious intent, e.g., to cause injury or loss, it’s considered a criminal offense. Formally, criminal impersonation can range from insurance fraud, credit card fraud, and identity theft. The law strictly prohibits impersonating public servants and law enforcement officials, like a police officer, so watch out.

Carrying A Pocket Knife

Although the majority find it odd to carry around a knife in their pocket, some people have their reasons. For instance, one might not think not much of it when they bring a swiss knife along for their camping trip. Though the intent is innocent, the act is still illegal. There are various examples of people being stopped for a minor traffic violation and getting into more trouble when the officers discover they’re carrying such weapons, including knives. However, know that not all knives are illegal, so active wisely.

Wrapping It Up

Nathalie Nicole Smith states that working hard and staying true to yourself are sure ways to win in life.

No matter the degree and class of a crime, such as a felony or a misdemeanor, criminal offenses can be the most tricky situations to navigate. For most individuals, an encounter with the law can be the most life-altering event. Therefore, it’s imperative to have a good grasp of the local laws and actions that might seem harmless but can have serious legal repercussions. This article discussed some misdemeanors and infractions that mostly go unnoticed. These include cycling without lights at night, trespassing on other's property, and vandalism through graffiti.