When an individual is responsible for engaging in a criminal offense and breaking laws, he/she will experience consequences of his/her actions. There are many different types of crimes in which an individual may partake. Each crime involves different actions of varying severity. As a result, each crime will result in a different criminal punishment.
When an individual is convicted of a criminal offense, there are three primary punishments that he/she will be issued: community service, a fine, or imprisonment. Frequently, if an individual has committed a minor misdemeanor offense, he/she will be required to complete community service or pay a specified fine. However, more serious offenses, including burglary, assault, and drug related offenses, are frequently addressed with incarceration.
The period of incarceration will vary significantly. First time non-violent offenders may only be required to remain in jail for a few years. Repeat offenders and violent offenders may serve life sentences and remain in prison for the duration of their lives. In many states, individuals who have been convicted of murder can be sentenced to the death penalty.