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How Does Oklahoma Criminal Law Differ From Other States?

People in Oklahoma who are charged with a crime may believe that they fully understand the criminal process because of what they have seen on TV, in movies and on the internet. Unfortunately, Oklahoma criminal law has a few unique differences compared to other states. Learn more about how Oklahoma criminal law differs from other states and how that may affect people who are charged with a crime.

Criminal Charge Classification

While most states classify misdemeanor and felony charges by Class A, B, and C to show levels of severity, Oklahoma is one of the few states that doesn’t have this class structure for criminal charges. Instead, Oklahoma simply has misdemeanor and felony charges, with each charge holding its own specific sentencing.

Felonies are defined as crimes punishable by death or imprisonment in state prison and include crimes such as sexual assault, robbery, second DUI offenses, drug trafficking, and homicide. Misdemeanors are less severe and are punishable by no more than one year in county jail. Misdemeanors can include first-time DUI offenses, shoplifting, vandalism, and drug possession.

Both misdemeanors and felonies can carry various fines on top of jail or prison time, and a misdemeanor charge can be increased to a felony if the charge is a second or third offense.

The Three Strikes Law

Oklahoma is known as one of the harshest states when it comes to criminal offenses, and the Three Strikes Law is a prime example of that. The Three Strikes Law states that anyone who has been convicted of three criminal charges, with one being a violent felony, will be sentenced to life in prison. While many people are looking to amend this law, it still stands today and is important to note.

Get Comprehensive Answers From An Attorney

These are just a few of the ways that Oklahoma criminal law differs from other states. To learn more about how these differences may affect your criminal charges, it is vital that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney.

The lawyers Talley, Turner, Stice & Bertman, can answer your questions and create a strong defense for your case. You can contact our Norman office now by calling 405-467-2858 or by sending us an email.