What Serious Crimes Are Minnesotans Charged With Most Often?
There is no such thing as a trivial criminal charge. A conviction for even relatively “minor” crimes can jeopardize your present and future. The criminal justice system is a hard place to navigate if you don’t have extensive experience. Regardless of the crime you’re accused of, you need a skillful Minnesota criminal defense attorney to protect your rights.
Not surprisingly, some crimes are far more common than others. While traffic crimes might be the most noticeable to many of us, many of these crimes are administrative rather than criminal offenses. When it comes to serious crimes that are charged in a Minnesota court, the most common offense is theft, or larceny.
The Criminal Code Is Large and Confusing
Larceny, theft, stealing are terms many adults know and understand. When it comes to how they’re charged in a court of law, however, that understanding will likely go out the window.
The 2022 Minnesota statute covering theft is 8 pages long, comprising nearly 3,500 words. It contains terms, definitions, and circumstances that have a massive impact on the penalties you could receive if convicted. There are separate provisions for grave robbing, theft of cable TV, and getting property or services from a coin- or token-operated machine. The statute also references other statutes that may affect the charges against you.
Theft is a perfect example of a seemingly simple criminal charge that can turn into a nightmare if you don’t have an experienced lawyer on your side.
A Range of Punishments
A person charged with theft of the smallest category of money ($500 or less) if there are no complicating factors, faces a potential sentence of imprisonment for 90 days and a fine of $1,000.
On the other end of the spectrum, theft of a firearm or property or services worth more than $35,000, under certain circumstances, exposes you to imprisonment for up to 20 years and a fine of $100,000.
If bodily harm to another was an associated risk, the sentence can go up by 50 percent.
Other Common Minnesota Crimes
Crime rates and trends can vary over time and may be subject to change. Here are some of the most common crimes reported in Minnesota:
Property crimes: Property crimes, including burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft, are among the most frequently reported crimes in Minnesota. These offenses involve the unlawful taking or damaging of someone’s property.
Drug-related offenses: Drug-related crimes, such as drug possession, sale, or manufacturing, are prevalent in Minnesota. Law enforcement agencies dedicate resources to combatting drug trafficking and illegal drug activities.
Assault and violent crimes: Assault and other violent crimes, such as robbery and homicide, can, unfortunately, occur in Minnesota as in any other state. However, the rate of violent crime tends to be comparatively lower in Minnesota than in some other states.
White-collar crimes: White-collar crimes, including fraud, embezzlement, and identity theft, are also common in Minnesota. These crimes typically involve deceit, misrepresentation, or financial manipulation.
Domestic violence: Domestic violence, including physical abuse, emotional abuse, and sexual assault within intimate relationships, is a significant concern in Minnesota. Resources and support services are available for victims of domestic violence.
It’s important to note that crime rates will across different cities, regions, and demographics within Minnesota. For the most accurate and up-to-date information on crime statistics, trends, and specific locations, it is advisable to consult official sources such as local law enforcement agencies or the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.
We Can Help You
Offenses such as domestic violence, assault, and DWI are also very common, though they lag far behind theft in terms of frequency of theft. Still, each is a serious offense that can take over your life if not dealt with properly. If you have been arrested or charged with a crime, you need to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible.
If you’ve been charged with theft or any other criminal offense in Minnesota, our team at White & Associates can help you. Contact us online or call 763-241-0477 to schedule a consultation.