Overview of Criminal Offenses

by | Oct 14, 2015 | criminal law



Trusting Clients

$21.5 m

Won in Settlements


Cases Won


Free Consultation

Written by admin

October 14, 2015

Overview of Criminal Offenses

Overview of Criminal Offenses

by Oct 14, 2015criminal law0 comments


Crimes/Criminal Offenses

What is a crime? By definition, a crime is either a violation of or neglect to perform a legal duty important to the protection of society, or an act that is not allowed because it is bad for society. Basically, a crime is a public wrong that the government punishes. (A private wrong is called a tort. Learn more about torts here.) If you have been accused of a crime, do not take it lightly. Call criminal defense attorney Alex Mendoza. Criminal defense attorney Alex Mendoza will fight for you and protect your rights.

There are various degrees of crime, based on the nature of each crime. Crimes that are considered moral or evil wrongs (mala in se) are classified as felonies, and crimes that are considered merely bad for public welfare (malum prohibitum) are misdemeanors. These two groups are further broken down into subgroups. Felonies fall under Levels 1–6, with 1 being the worst crimes. Misdemeanors are grouped into Classes A, B, or C, with Class A misdemeanors being more serious—things such as harboring a fugitive, battery resulting in injury, simple assault, prostitution, disorderly conduct, and public intoxication. If you have been accused of a misdemeanor or felony, you should consult with an aggressive criminal defense attorney.

Elements of a Crime

There are two elements to every crime: intent and action. Guilty intent (called mens rea) is basically a thought-out plan to commit an act that you know is wrong. With action but no intent, or vice versa, there is no crime; both parts are needed to make a crime. However, just because an action is not a crime does not mean that it is not still unlawful. Furthermore, there are situations in which the act itself is the intent. For example, some offenses consist only of the breaking of a law. So breaking the law itself is intentional and is therefore a crime.

How exactly does a criminal defense attorney determine intent? This is a good question, as it seems hard to know what someone intends at a given point in time. Legally, though, intent is based on conduct and the average person’s ability to know the consequences of his or her actions. In other words, a person is expected to know the possible consequences of his actions and is therefore liable for those consequences, even if he didn’t intend them.

Intent is also based on malice, a state of mind in which a person is doing something intentionally, willfully, and without any good reason or excuse. Malice can be express or implied. Express malice is usually spoken—for example, violent or angry things a person says before committing an act. Implied malice is inferred based on the facts after the fact.

A crime needs more than intent; there must also be an act that breaks a law. If there is only intent, and no actual breaking of a law, then there is no real crime. This act must be the actual cause of the outcome, and also the legal cause. For example, driving recklessly and causing a fatal accident would make a person both the actual and legal cause of that fatality.

In a situation such as this, however, the driver could be charged with two crimes: reckless driving and manslaughter. Along these lines, all the steps in a crime can be charged as separate offenses of varying degrees. If multiple offenses are consistent in time, place, and purpose, they can be lumped together. For example, stealing various items from the same store will be considered only one act of theft.

Attempted Crimes

An attempted crime is categorized just as it would be if the crime were actually committed (felony or misdemeanor and level/class). So, for example, both armed robbery and attempted armed robbery are Class B felonies. (The only exception to this is attempted murder, which is a Level 1 felony.) For an attempted crime to truly be an attempt, the crime must not have been completed, but real steps (beyond plans) must have been taken toward completing the crime.

Statute Of Limitations

Statute of limitations is a time limit put on the prosecution of crimes. It is meant to protect defendants from problems that come from prolonged trials, such as fading memories or stale evidence. For felonies level 3 through 6, prosecution is barred five years after the crime is committed. For misdemeanors, the window is two years after the crime. For situations of child molesting, solicitation, seduction, or incest, the prosecution can begin up until the victim is aged 31. However, for all other sex crimes, the statute of limitations is ten years (or four years after the end of dependency of the victim).

Hammond Criminal DUI Defense lawyer
Personal Injury Lawyer Alex Mendoza

No Results Found

The page you requested could not be found. Try refining your search, or use the navigation above to locate the post.

Car Accidents
Bicycle Accidents
Slip & Fall / Premise Liability
Motorcycle Accidents


1 Hour Free Consult?

personal injury lawyer Alex Mendoza Fair Fee Guarantee
personal injury lawyer Alex Mendoza Fair Fee Guarantee
personal injury lawyer Alex Mendoza Fair Fee Guarantee
Let’s Together

Recent Accident Blogs

Medical Malpractice And Negligence Attorneys

Of course, our society trusts hospitals and medical professionals to take care of us when we get sick. Indeed, most people put a special kind of trust in the doctors, nurses, surgeons, and other medical professionals who treat us. However, medical professionals are human. They sometimes make mistakes. When they make mistakes that injure their patients, the patients need experienced medical malpractice and negligence attorneys.

When Do You Need a Construction Site Accident Lawyer?

Working on a construction site is one of the most dangerous jobs you can have. Consequently, every year construction site accidents injure hundreds of workers at work sites. Therefore, if a construction site accident injures you, you need a construction site accident lawyer.

How Common Are Roller Coaster Accidents?

The answer to the question “How common are roller coaster accidents” is “not very.” In fact, the likelihood of dying on a roller coaster is pretty low. According to the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions, the deaths per year are so low that the odds of dying on a roller coaster ride is roughly one in 750 million.

When to Hire a Workers’ Comp Lawyer

If a workplace accident injures you, one of the first questions you may have is, “Do I need to hire a workers’ comp lawyer?” The answer to that question is, “Usually, yes.” In fact, it depends on the type and seriousness of your injury, whether you missed time from work and several other factors.

Do You Need a Dog Bite Lawyer?

Do You Need a Dog Bite Lawyer?

Whether you love or hate dogs, if one attacks you, it can be a terrifying experience. If the animal bites you, you may deal with a significant injury. Depending on how serious your injury is, you may need a dog bite attorney to get the compensation you deserve.

Free Consultations


alex mendoza personal injury attorney award
Why Do I Need An Attorney?

At Alex Mendoza Law, we value our clients. In other words, we believe life is sacred. We believe your health is invaluable and sometimes irreversible. And we believe that you deserve a fierce, passionate and determined legal team. While the insurance company may just see you as a greedy person taking advantage of the system, we know that’s not true.

<h3>Fierce, Passionate, and Determined</h3>
At Alex Mendoza Law, LLC, our lawyers are always looking for ways to get an edge over the competition. In fact, when we’re not in the office working hard on your case, we’re attending the top plaintiff lawyer conferences in the country; Or we are studying the research by experts in the field to learn the psychology behind what motivates jurors to do right by plaintiffs.  In short, it means we go into every single personal injury case with a game-plan that works. So, let’s discuss your case and get you connected today.

Who Are Our Clients?
We don’t represent malingerers, fakers, or cry-babies. If we’ve taken your case, it’s because you’re injured and truly hurt, physically and emotionally. So, when you’ve been permanently injured because of someone else’s negligence, we’ll make them pay. For this reason, we won’t back down until we’ve gotten you a fair settlement or go to trial. Yes, our job is to get you money. But, it’s not only about the money. It’s about making them pay for what they’ve done. It’s about holding them accountable and upholding the laws that keep our community safe. In fact, that’s what justice is all about. Remember, we’re passionate about what we do, and we’re good at it. So consider working with us and give us a call at 219.200.2000.
What Kind of Cases Do You Handle?

Alex Mendoza Law handles automobile, motorcycle, and semi-truck collisions, slip and falls, and sexual abuse cases. If you’ve been injured or harmed, physically or mentally, because of someone else’s negligence or intentional conduct, let us help! Our skilled attorneys are licensed in Indiana and Illinois, with offices conveniently located in Hammond, Indiana, and downtown Chicago, in the loop. Learn more about our firm, and look at our Google business page to see dozens of reviews from satisfied clients.


Business Hours

Mon – Fri : 9:00 – 5:00 PM
Sat – Sun: Closed
Injury Law Menu
Call IN: 219.200.2000

Illinois and Indiana