Gainesville Felony and Misdemeanor Defense Lawyer

Georgia criminal defense firm protects the rights of accused individuals

The way you respond to a felony or misdemeanor criminal charge can have a profound effect on the result of your case. Your first priority should be to retain a lawyer with the skill or experience to safeguard your rights. At The Brownell Law Office in Gainesville, Attorney William M. (Bill) Brownell, Jr. has represented Georgia clients for decades. We will make sure you understand the nature of the allegations and the potential consequences associated with them so that you can make an informed decision on how to proceed.

Felony charges under Georgia law

Under Georgia criminal law, a felony offense is one that can be punished by at least one year in prison. Even after serving their sentence, felons lose their right to vote and are excluded from many types of jobs. If you’re accused of one of these offenses, it is essential to retain an experienced defense lawyer immediately. Specific felony crimes include:

  • Robbery
  • Aggravated assault
  • Rape
  • Drug possession and distribution
  • Homicide

Unlike some other states, Georgia does not classify felonies into different degrees. Each offense has a specific sentencing range. For example, a murder conviction is punished by a mandatory life sentence and a first conviction for armed robbery, rape or kidnapping is punished by a prison term of 10 to 25 years. There are also several crimes, such as theft, that can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony depending on the purported severity of the offense. Whether the allegation involves violence, a white-collar offense or something else, Mr. Brownell advocates for appropriate charges.

Misdemeanor crimes

Though misdemeanor offenses are generally punished less severely than felony charges, a conviction will still leave you with a criminal record, as well as punishment that could include a fine, probation, community service and incarceration of up to one year. Mr. Brownell represents Georgians facing all types of misdemeanor allegations, including:

  • Simple assault
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Shoplifting
  • Disorderly conduct

Every criminal case is a serious matter and our firm takes on the authorities to help Georgians avoid unjust consequences.

Defenses against criminal charges

Police and prosecutors can be very intimidating, and many accused individuals are hesitant to exercise, or even ask about, their constitutional rights. This is why it is important to retain a seasoned defense lawyer as soon as you are accused of a crime. You have the right to legal counsel as soon as you are taken into custody. Mr. Brownell can represent you during questioning so that you do not incriminate yourself and work immediately to develop the strongest possible defense, which might involve an alibi, a claim of self-defense, police misconduct or something else.

Providing strong advocacy throughout the criminal justice process

Following an arrest, cases involving felony and misdemeanor charges typically start with an initial appearance where the charges are read and a magistrate sets bail. Mr. Brownell argues for fair terms so that defendants are not unfairly detained. In a preliminary hearing, the prosecutor will attempt to demonstrate that enough evidence exists for an indictment. From there, plea bargain negotiations might take place where the state might agree to a reduced charge and lesser sentence in exchange for a guilty plea. If that does not work out, the case proceeds to motions proceedings, potentially to exclude improperly obtained evidence, and possibly to trial. 

Contact an experienced Georgia criminal defense attorney  

The Brownell Law Office in Gainesville represents Georgia clients facing felony and misdemeanor criminal charges. For a consultation with Mr. Brownell regarding your situation and legal options, please call 770-215-0184 or contact us online. Our office is in Gainesville.