29 July, 2021

Criminal misdemeanors can be a frightening charge to face. If you face misdemeanor charges in Washington, contact the Leyba Defense team at (206) 922-8658 to discuss your concerns about possible misdemeanor jail time today.

According to the Revised Code of Washington (sections 9A.20.010 and 9A.20.021), a simple misdemeanor charge is any crime punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000 and/or punishable through no more than 90 days imprisonment in county jail. Gross misdemeanors are punishable by up to 364 days in the county jail and/or a fine of no more than $5,000. These misdemeanor levels of criminal offenses are different from criminal felonies as they are considered minor compared to felony-level crimes.

Jail for a Misdemeanor

So, to answer the question, “can you go to prison for a misdemeanor?” the short answer is — no. However, jail time for misdemeanors may be possible as defined in the Revised Code of Washington. Keep in mind that “jail time” and “prison time” are very different sentencing levels.

Examples of Simple and Gross Misdemeanors in Washington State

From first-time misdemeanor offenses to finding out what the maximum sentence for misdemeanors might be in your case, it is helpful to know what qualifies as a simple or gross misdemeanor in Washington state. We have put together a list of common misdemeanors and their potential sentences below. Remember that each criminal or civil case will be unique and dependent on your situation.

Examples of Sentencing for Simple and Gross Misdemeanors

Several charges may qualify as a simple or gross misdemeanor as defined by the RCW. We’ve put together some of the various charges that count as simple or gross misdemeanors in Washington. Take a look:

Simple Misdemeanors and Their Maximum Sentences

  • Driving without a Driver’s License
  • Vandalism
  • Disorderly Conduct
  • Prostitution
  • Shopping Cart Theft

These simple misdemeanors and others in the same class of crime in the state of Washington can result in fines and/or jail time in the local county facility. The maximum fines for simple misdemeanors can be no more than $1,000, and the time spent in county jail can be no more than 90 days. The judge can choose whether to impose only one or both of these sentence types and whether to require the maximum amount or less.

Gross Misdemeanors and Their Maximum Sentences

  • Theft in the third degree
  • Possession of Stolen Property in the third degree
  • Theft of Subscription Television Services
  • Obscuration of the Identity of a Machine
  • Criminal Mischief — Without a Deadly Weapon

These gross misdemeanors and other similarly classed crimes can also result in fines and/or time spent in the local county jail. The maximum fine for gross misdemeanors can be up to $5,000, and the time spent in county jail can be no longer than 364 days. Once more, the judge will have the final say in whether the sentence will include one or both possible sentences and what the amount of either will be.

Call Leyba Defense at 206-922-8658 to speak with an attorney about your legal concerns today.