In the state of Texas, misdemeanors are categorized by three classes A, B, or C. Most misdemeanor crimes in Texas are punishable by paying fines as well as potentially serving up to a year in county or local jail.
What is a Class A misdemeanor? This type of misdemeanor is the highest misdemeanor offense there is, the next step after this is a felony. These misdemeanors can even be enhanced and turned into a felony if the offense is serious enough. The criminal offenses of a Class A misdemeanor can consist of assault, public lewdness, possession between two and four ounces of marijuana, violating protective orders and theft between $750 and $2,500. The charges for committing these criminal offenses are up to one year in jail and/or up to $4,000 in fines. However, if drugs were used or if the offense is motivated by bias/or a preconceived opinion than there is a 180-day mandatory jail minimum sentence; and there is a 90-day jail sentence minimum if the defendant has a prior felony or Class A misdemeanor.
What is a Class B misdemeanor? Class B misdemeanors are midrange in severity, they are less severe than Class A, but more than Class C. Like Class A, Class B misdemeanors can also be increased to a felony if they are enhanced. Examples of a Class B misdemeanors are indecent exposure, enticing a child, and theft between $100 and $750. The penalty for this Class is up to 180 days in county jail and fines up to $2,000. If they have a prior conviction for a felony or Class A/Class B misdemeanors there is a 30-day minimum jail sentence. However, probation is possible for this type of misdemeanor.
Lastly, is a Class C misdemeanor. Class C misdemeanors are the least serious charges in Texas. There are not any chances of serving a jail sentence with a first-time offense like this. However, fines can go as high as $500. Some examples are traffic tickets, theft of less than $50, and other disorderly conduct. As well as fines, Class C misdemeanors can affect your driving. Traffic tickets can add points to your driving record and will stay on your record for three years. If you receive more than a certain number of points on your driving record you will be required to pay a fine. However, the more points you receive can also lead to not only paying a fine but increased car insurance rate and eventually lead to license suspensions.