Las Vegas is a city that thrives on entertainment and excitement. It is also home to some significant criminal activity conducted in the ‘city that never sleeps’. The types of felonies in Las Vegas are as diverse as the city’s landscape.
Some of the many millions who visit the city are interested to know not only what the crime rate in Las Vegas is, but also may wish to know what sort of crimes – ie felonies – exist in the city.
The Nevada Independent newspaper reported late in 2021 that although Las Vegas had been similar to other major US cities and saw a rise in the murder and assault rate, during the COVID-19 pandemic protests and otherwise, there remained serious criminal activity despite an overall slowing in the crime rate due in part at least to lockdowns during the pandemic.
However any overall decline is erratic and does nothing to alleviate the fact that there remains a serious crime rate in the city and elsewhere in Nevada.
The ‘safewise’ website reported that Las Vegas was the sixth safest city in Nevada in 2021, noting that the Silver State is the fourth most-concerned state in the United States so far as criminal activity is concerned, with six our of every 10 people (who presumably include both visitors and residents) worried about their safety from crime.
The Nevada Independent’s research on crime in Las Vegas aggregated and analyzed data from Nevada Crime Online a website managed by the Department of Public Safety where crime data is collected and collated and displayed an overall increase in violent and serious crime.
What are the views of a Las Vegas drug crime attorney regarding the types of crimes that occur and what those facing them can expect.
What is a felony?
A felony is a serious criminal offense that can lead to incarceration and a long prison sentence. A felony typically includes a crime against the state, such as murder or robbery, or a crime that involves violence or some risk of physical harm to others, like burglary.
Felony charges are the most harshly punished crimes in Las Vegas. There are five types of felonies in Las Vegas, Nevada: category A felonies, category B felonies, category C felonies, category D felonies, and category E felonies.
What is the difference between misdemeanor and felony?
A misdemeanor is a less serious criminal charge, while a felony is the most serious.
For example, if you are charged with a simple battery, it is considered a misdemeanor. If you are charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon or attempted murder, it would be considered felonies.
What are their penalties?
Category A felonies are the most dangerous felony out there. You can face life in prison with or without the possibility of parole. Even for first-degree murder cases, the convicted can be given the death penalty.
Category B felonies can carry a prison time of 1 to 20 years. Sometimes, you have to pay a fine alongside the prison time.
Category C felonies can result in 1 to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Category D felonies can cause you a 1 to 4 years prison time and a fine of up to $5,000.
Category E felonies are the lightest felony charges among them. It can carry a suspended sentence and probation with the possibility of having a jail time of up to 1 year.
What are some common examples of felony crimes?
From murders to sexual assaults, all the serious crimes go under category A felony crimes.
Category B felony includes crimes like robbery, burglary, assault with a deadly weapon, voluntary manslaughter, etc.
Domestic violence, stalking, grand larceny, etc., are popular examples of category C felonies.
Category D felonies include crimes like parental kidnapping, involuntary manslaughter, sharing someone’s intimate images without permission, and so on.
Possessing a fraudulent drug prescription, calling 911 without a valid reason, possessing most illegal drugs for personal use, etc. are the perfect example of category E felony.
Can you seal felony convictions?
All types of crimes cannot be sealed in Nevada. Offenses like crimes against children, sex crimes, felony DUI.
On the other hand, common crimes can be sealed after a certain period.
In that case, category A felony convictions can be sealed ten years after the case is closed. For categories B, C, and D, these cases can be sealed five years after the case is closed. The time duration is about two years after the case is closed in case of category E felony convictions.
Can you get a jury trial in Las Vegas?
Yes, you can get a jury trial in Las Vegas, but it depends on the nature of the offense and if your lawyer thinks it is worth it. In most cases, a judge would decide whether or not to have a jury trial.
There are two ways juries could be selected in Las Vegas: being summoned as a normal process, which includes looking at potential jurors based on hundreds of detailed questions asked through a questionnaire. It should cover one’s record, education, and opinions.
Alternatively, an all-impaneled jury can be called for criminal cases in which the trial is limited to two or three hours of sworn testimony – unless there are multiple defendants or other defense requests that necessitate more time.
How do felony charges impact your future?
Felony charges are very serious, and people who have been charged should face a lawyer immediately as soon as possible. Facing a felony charge could ruin your life by affecting every part of your life, such as your future job, family ties, residency, and other things. You may lose your right to vote or carry a gun in such cases.
Often, the police do not want to arrest first-time offenders for easing their efforts.
What to do if you are charged with a felony crime?
If you have been charged with a felony crime, you should consult an experienced criminal defense attorney. The attorney will be able to review the charges and offer potential defenses.
Finally, we have mentioned a complete guide to the types of felonies in Las Vegas. This blog has described the different types of felonies and their punishment that you might face if you commit any of them in Las Vegas.
How long does it take to resolve a case in Las Vegas?
Most cases can be resolved within the initial review of the police report to see if there is a violation. Depending on the case, prosecutors usually can dismiss charges; then, it will go through several judicial layers until approval for dismissal is granted at the end of the process.
Requests for further investigation and evidence are usually filed after a dismissal decision or when additional proceedings or other trials arise during any of the legal steps. If a case goes on trial, it will take months before conclusion as there are evidentiary hearings and possibly jury selection depending on what is needed in taking up a prosecution case against you if the prosecutor wants to take the case to trial.
Source: Yampolsky & Margolis Criminal Defense Las Vegas are experienced Las Vegas-based criminal attorneys who have worked in Las Vegas for 35 years.