29 July, 2021

The definition of a criminal offense is knowing or conducting one’s behavior in a way that violates local, state, or federal laws. Some behaviors are only considered civil offenses, like disagreements concerning payment schedules, other, more severe offenses toward a person or property are considered criminal. Criminal offenses in the state of Washington can fall under three different levels: a misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, and felony.

What is a Criminal Offense

Levels of Criminal Offense

The least punishable level of a criminal offense in the state of Washington is called a misdemeanor. The most punishable level of a criminal offense in this state is known as felonies. Crimes that fall between the least and most punishable offenses are called gross misdemeanors.

  • Simple misdemeanor offenses

    1. Maximum punishment can include up to 90 days in county jail, with or without a fine of up to $1,000.
    2. May include but not limited to shoplifting, driving without a license, prostitution, disorderly conduct, and other generally non-violent crimes.
  • Gross misdemeanor offenses

    1. Maximum punishment can include up to 364 days in county jail, with or without a fine of up to $5,000.
    2. May include but not limited to spoofing, criminal mischief, defrauding a public utility in the third degree,
  • Felony Criminal Offenses

    1. Class A Felony
      • Maximum punishment can include up to a lifetime sentence in state prison, with or without a fine of up to $50,000.
      • May include but not limited to first-degree robbery, first-degree arson, first-degree assault.
    2. Class B Felony
      • Maximum punishment can include up to ten years imprisonment in state prison, with or without a fine of up to $20,000.
      • May include but not limited to theft of a motor vehicle, the theft of a firearm, extortion.
    3. Class C Felony
      • Maximum punishment can include up to five years in state prison, with or without a fine of up to $10,000.
      • May include but not limited to forgery, criminal impersonation in the first degree, vehicle prowling.

Call Leyba Defense at (206) 429-8425 to speak with an attorney about criminal offense concerns.

Types of Criminal Offense

While there are three levels of a criminal offense in Washington, multiple types of criminal offenses are determined by local, state, and federal law. Some are concerned with crimes against a person, while others are concerned with crimes against property. Let’s take a look at a more detailed list of the different types of criminal offenses.

  • Personal Crimes

    1. Personal crimes cause physical or mental harm to a person. These may or may not be considered violent crimes depending on the level and type of harm.
    2. May include, but not limited to: harassment, homicide, kidnapping, sexual assault
  • Property Crimes

    1. Property crimes deprive the use or enjoyment of property belonging to a person.
    2. May include, but not limited to, theft, burglary, arson, malicious mischief
  • Inchoate Crimes

    1. Inchoate crimes are a substantial step toward initiating a crime.
    2. May include, but not limited to, criminal solicitation, criminal attempt, criminal conspiracy
  • Statutory Crimes

    1. Statutory crimes are crimes that break local, state, or federal statutes
    2. May include, but not limited to, the manufacturing of drugs, distribution of drugs, public intoxication, traffic offenses, tax evasion

Call Leyba Defense at (206) 429-8425 to discuss your situation with an experienced criminal defense attorney.