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When facing felony charges, there is a lot at stake. A felony conviction on your record can affect your life in ways that are different from a misdemeanor. You may be wondering, what must be done to get a felony charge reduced to a misdemeanor? Our attorneys at Smith & Vinson Law Firm are here to explain some factors that can make this possible.

Plea Bargaining

One of the most common ways that criminal charges of any kind are reduced is through plea bargaining. If a defendant is offered a plea bargain, this typically means they are offered a lesser charge and decreased penalties in exchange for a guilty plea. This way, the case does not go through trial and the defendant is spared the risk of harsher consequences.

Therefore, an individual facing felony charges may instead be offered a misdemeanor conviction in exchange for a guilty plea.

By The Judge’s Decision

Under Texas Penal Code 12.44(a), a judge may decide to lower a state jail felony charge to a misdemeanor if they believe it is appropriate. This will be done if the judge does not believe that the defendant is a danger, if they believe the felony was not severe, and if they believe that a misdemeanor is more just based on the facts of the case.

Examples of state jail felonies that may be reduced under 12.44(a) include:

  • Identity theft
  • DWI
  • Check forgery
  • Credit card fraud
  • Interfering with child custody
  • Making a false report
  • Theft of items under $20,000

It’s important to note that the prosecutors may also request a charge reduction if they believe the defendant’s felony charge should be a misdemeanor instead.

Austin Felony and Misdemeanor Defense Attorneys

No matter the severity of your criminal charges, you need the help of an experienced defense team. Our attorneys at Smith & Vinson Law Firm have handled a variety of complex cases, and we know what needs to be done to get the best possible results. Speak to our team today and get started on your defense; call (512) 359-3743 or click here.

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