What is a Crime?
A crime is a broad term that refers to any breach of rules or laws which govern a region or area. Governing authorities establish a legal code to create harmony in a society. When these laws are broken, a crime is realized.
Crimes ultimately prescribe a conviction, which is the process of punishing an individual for the illegal action committed. The majority of developed nations in the world have a distinct legal code that, if breached, will result in punishments in the form of monetary fines or incarceration.
Government bodies and authorities employ various mechanisms to regulate societal behaviors. The most basic mechanism is the creation of laws, which are codified rules. Law enforcement agencies are responsible for upholding these rules and instituting their authority to prevent and subsequently punish those individuals who violate them.
A crime in the United States is classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony. Misdemeanors are the broad legal term which incorporates smaller or petty violations. Typically misdemeanors do not result in incarceration and are typically settled through the fulfillment of a fine.
Misdemeanors are also rarely physical in nature, meaning the violation does not deliver significant damage to the victim of the crime. In contrast, felonies are considered grave violations of the legal code. Felonies can vary from a murder to an extreme case of counterfeiting. However, all felony convictions will impose harsh punishments in the form of prison sentences or hefty fines.
Those charged with any sort of crime, from a misdemeanor to a felony, should seek the aid of an attorney. Legal professionals will vary in regards to their specialty so choosing a lawyer in accordance with the underlying crime is of the utmost importance.