Know about different types of criminal sentences

The court has several options available for sentencing a person who have been convicted of a crime or who has pleaded guilty to a criminal charge. Before you set up your defense, you should be aware of what types of sentences you might be facing. Your defense attorney can help you to learn what the court tends to do in similar criminal cases, but don't think that you are going to receive the same sentence. There are many factors that the judge will consider when they are trying to determine what sentence is appropriate.

Some criminal statutes have a mandatory minimum sentence in place. This means that the judge has to issue at least that sentence, but they can also hand one down that is harsher. Typically, a mandatory minimum sentence has to do with an imprisonment term.

A person who is convicted of more than one crime needs to know the difference between a consecutive sentence and a concurrent one. A consecutive sentence means that you must finish one sentence prior to starting the next one. A concurrent one means that more than one sentence can be served at the same time.

For example, if you are sentenced to 10 years for armed robbery and 10 years for assault with a deadly weapon, you would be in prison for 20 years if they are served consecutively or 10 years if they are served concurrently.

Other types of sentences include alternative sentences, such as probation, deferred sentences that don't start right away and a suspended sentence. Talking to your attorney can help you learn about what you might have to deal with in your case.

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