Murfreesboro Criminal Defense Attorneys

When charged with a serious crime, you need a dedicated lawyer to provide a comprehensive defense in felony cases

Simply stated, felonies are egregious offenses punishable by lengthy prison sentences and large fines. In Tennessee, felonies are classified based on severity. Even if you are found guilty of a crime that falls into the lowest category, you face one to six years in prison and a $3,000 fine. The skilled Murfreesboro criminal defense lawyers at Kidwell, South, Beasley & Haley provide exceptional legal representation in felony cases.

Here’s what to expect if you’ve been charged with a felony

Facing a felony charge is frightening, especially if you have never been in trouble before. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and intimidated, but our Murfreesboro criminal defense lawyers make sure you understand what’s going on at each court appearance. This is usually what happens:

  • Arraignment – Your first appearance, usually in General Sessions Court. This is when you will learn what you’ve been charged with and have an attorney appointed to represent you if you can’t afford one. A decision regarding bail is typically made during this hearing.
  • Preliminary hearing – At this time, a General Sessions Court judge reviews evidence to determine whether there is enough to warrant sending your case to Circuit Court for further adjudication.
  • Grand jury – This group also reviews the evidence and hears testimony in your case. After deliberations, which are not open to the public, the panel takes a vote. If all but one member thinks you’ve done what you’re accused of, you will be indicted.
  • Arraignment in Circuit Court – Required by law, this process is identical to the one that transpired in General Sessions Court.
  • Appearance day – The time when you can plead guilty or the Circuit Court judge will either schedule a date for your trial.
  • The trial – A Circuit Court judge or jury will render a verdict after witnesses testify and attorneys for both sides present their arguments in your case.

What happens if I’m found guilty of a felony crime?

The Circuit Court judge will schedule your next appearance, which is commonly known as the sentencing hearing. You will receive your punishment at this time. The severity of your sentence will depend upon the classification of the crime you committed. Some basic guidelines follow:

  • Class A felony – 15 to 60 years in prison and a maximum fine of $50,000
  • Class B felony – 8  to 30 years in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000 unless otherwise allowed by law
  • Class C felony – 3 to 15 years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000 unless otherwise allowed by law
  • Class D felony – 2 to 12 years in prison and a maximum fine of $5,000 unless otherwise allowed by law
  • Class E felony – 1 to 6 years in prison and a maximum fine of $3,000 unless otherwise allowed by law

Contact our Murfreesboro criminal defense lawyers today to discuss your felony case

The criminal defense lawyers at Kidwell, South, Beasley & Haley have extensive experience handling felony cases, so contact us today if you are facing felony charges. You can reach us by phone at (615) 893-1331 or contact us online to schedule an appointment.