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Mr. Donath has spent his entire career defending people and standing up for the rights of the accused.

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  • former deputy public defender

    As a former Deputy Public Defender in Riverside County, Mr. Donath has always been on the defense side of the law. 

  • award winning certified criminal law specialist

    Top 100 Trial Attorneys in California 2012-2014, 2008 Trial Attorney of the Year by the Riverside County Public Defender's Office, and dozens of other awards and accolades.

  • a true passion for defending the accused

    Your lawyer should have a passion for defense, not just a passion for money. Reputation, vigor, and determination go a long way in this business.

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Riverside Felony Attorney

Under California law, felony charges carry the most severe criminal penalties. If you have been arrested and charged with a felony crime, it is critical that you get a strong legal advocate on your side. If you are found guilty of a felony, everything you hoped for in your future could be on the line.

At the Law Offices of Graham D. Donath, our Riverside Felony Attorney is prepared to help you dodge a conviction by building a powerful defense strategy. Schedule your confidential consultation when you contact our Riverside office at 951-667-5293 or our Orange County office at 714-758-5293.

Why Choose the Law Offices of Graham D. Donath for Your Case

You need a zealous legal defender to help you obtain an acquittal for the felony charges against you. With the Law Offices of Graham D. Donath, you get:

  • One of one a few lawyers to have earned the honor of Certified Specialist in Criminal Law by the California State Bar Board of Legal Specialization
  • Attorney Donath was been selected for inclusion in the Top 100 Trial Attorneys in California 2012-2014 
  • Mr. Donath is a former Deputy Public Defender in Riverside County— he has always devoted 100% of his practice to criminal defense 
  • He has been described by former clients as aggressive and highly experienced

How a Felony Attorney in Riverside Could Help You

Your Riverside felony lawyer will be responsible for taking on several responsibilities in order to obtain an acquittal in your case. Some of our key duties often include:

  • Opening up an investigation into the criminal charges against you, and the evidence in the prosecution’s case
  • Securing other supporting evidence such as witness statements, expert testimony, and forensic evidence
  • Preparing to work out a plea agreement with the state when the case against you may warrant it
  • Fighting for reduced charges, and they are for a reduced sentence
  • Dealing with the appeals process in the event that you are found guilty or otherwise disagree with the judge or jury‘s final decision

These are only a few of the ways that your felony lawyer will be responsible for assisting you with your legal troubles. You can find out more about what is next for your case when you contact your felony lawyer in Riverside for more information.

When Can You Be Charged With a Felony

Under CA Penal Code § 17, a felony is any crime that carries a maximum sentence of more than one year in state jail or prison. If the crime in question carries a maximum sentence of one year or less in state jail, then you may be tried with a misdemeanor. 

Felony criminal convictions are far more serious than misdemeanors. Not only will you suffer criminal penalties, but the impact that a conviction will have on your life as a whole is devastating. For this reason, it is critical that you take steps to defend yourself. 

Common Types of Riverside Felony Charges 

There are many different types of criminal charges that could be tried as felonies. Generally, depending on the details of your case, there may be specific criminal charges that must be filed against you, and additional ones that may also apply. 

Felony charges do not always need to be violent crimes either. There are many types of non-violent crimes that can be tried as felony charges. With that being said, here are some of the most common types of felony charges filed against individuals in Riverside: 

These are only a few of the more common types of felony charges that our former clients have faced. If you have been charged with another type of felony that was not listed above, be sure to reach out to our Riverside felony lawyers to discuss the options for your defense.

Riverside Felony Attorney

Penalties for a Felony Conviction in Riverside 

Due to the fact that there are so many different types of felony crimes, there are also many different penalties you could face depending on the type of felony you were charged with and the aggravating factors in your case. Generally, someone convicted of a felony could expect to be ordered to pay fines as high as $10,000. 

But some criminal statutes set forth specific terms that apply. For example, under California Penal Code 461(a) PC, if you are convicted of a felony first-degree burglary, you could be ordered to spend two, four, or six years in prison, based on the specific details of your case. 

There are also situations in which felonies do not require specific terms of imprisonment. Instead, they might state that “the offense may be punished pursuant to California Penal Code 1170(h)”. Here, you could spend 16 months, two years, or three years in a county jail at the judge’s discretion.

You could also be facing, 25 years to life in prison, life in prison without the possibility of parole, or even the death penalty based on which felony you have been charged with, such as in cases of murder or homicide. 

In addition to fines and jail or prison time, there are other criminal penalties that you will face as a result of a felony conviction. Some of the more common include:

  • Completion of drug or alcohol treatment programs
  • Court-mandated anger management
  • Court-mandated community service
  • Random drug and alcohol testing
  • Felony probation
  • Revocation or suspension of your driver’s license

But this is not all. Unfortunately, felony convictions have been known to destroy a convicted felon’s life. Even after dealing with the criminal penalties of your conviction, the collateral fallout that you could experience may be devastating.

Collateral Consequences of a Felony Conviction in Riverside

Collateral consequences refer to the various ways that your life as a whole may be affected by your conviction. For people convicted of misdemeanor and felony convictions in Riverside, the collateral consequences are harsh. Some of the more common include:

  • Loss of gun rights
  • Difficulty finding a job
  • Trouble with child custody
  • Citizenship and immigration issues
  • Registration as a sex offender, where applicable
  • Loss of federal student aid eligibility
  • Trouble finding affordable or safe housing
  • Random drug testing
  • Completion of probation or parole requirements
  • Revocation or suspension of your professional licenses
  • Damage to your personal and professional reputations
  • Strained relationships with your family and friends

Your entire future could be on the line if you are found guilty of a felony in Riverside. With penalties this severe, it has never been more important to clear your name of the charges against you. Take charge of your defense by retaining an aggressive felony attorney in Riverside who will prepare a strong defense strategy and advocate tirelessly for your rights.

How are sentences determined after a conviction?

As previously mentioned, many felony crimes have fixed sentences that are pre-determined for that specific crime. Unless the jail term is specifically mentioned within the criminal statute, a defendant will spend 16 months, two years, or three years in prison. 

But it will be up to the judge presiding over your case to determine which of these fixed periods of incarceration are most appropriate for your case. The judge will take many different types of aggravating circumstances into account, such as:

  • Your criminal history
  • Whether anyone was injured in your case
  • Victim’s statements
  • Whether there was use of a deadly weapon
  • The age of the victim
  • Your role in the offense
  • Your likelihood of reoffending (recidivism)
  • Whether you have shown signs of remorse

In the vast majority of felony cases, a judge will issue the middle term of incarceration unless aggravating factors are present. Conversely, if mitigating factors are present, then a judge may be more inclined to issue a lower term of incarceration.

What are Wobbler Crimes?

There are many different crimes that can be considered wobblers. A wobbler crime is any type of crime that can be treated as a misdemeanor or a felony. 

For example, if you were charged with sexual battery, grand theft auto, or assault with a deadly weapon, you could be charged at the misdemeanor or felony level depending on the specific details of your case, including whether there are any aggravating or mitigating factors present.

Conversely, straight misdemeanors and straight felonies are crimes that can only be charged and sentenced as misdemeanors and felonies, respectively. 

Judges have the discretion to reduce the state’s felony charges to a misdemeanor in several circumstances, including:

  • Imposing a misdemeanor sentence
  • Reducing the crime to a misdemeanor if probation has been granted
  • Declaring the crime to be a misdemeanor when granting probation

After carefully reviewing the evidence in your case, and considering your defense of options, your Riverside felony lawyer will have a better idea of how to convince the judge that your case should be tried as a misdemeanor as opposed to a felony.

Riverside Felony FAQ

Felony criminal cases can be extremely complex. You will need to put everything you have into your defense strategy if you hope to be acquitted or achieve a favorable outcome in your case. But you may have many unanswered questions about what to expect from your case going forward.

We have answered some of the top questions surrounding felony charges in Riverside that our former clients have had regarding their cases. If you have additional questions regarding your felony charges, be sure to contact our office to discuss your individual questions and concerns.

What is California’s Three-Strike Law?

The California Three-Strike Law refers to additional penalties a defendant can receive if they have previously been convicted of a crime. If you have previously been convicted of three serious or violent felonies in your lifetime, upon the third conviction, you will face a prison sentence of between 25 years to life. Read more here.

What are sentencing enhancements under CA law?

Sentencing enhancements are additional penalties that can be imposed when a defendant is convicted of a crime. For example, California’s Three-Strike Law can impose a sentence enhancement of 25 years to life in prison. 

Another example could be Cal Penal Code §§ 667, 1170.12, where convicted felons can be sentenced to an additional five years for every previous felony conviction on their record. Since sentencing enhancements can have a devastating impact on a criminal conviction, it is essential that your attorney be prepared to aggressively argue for a lesser sentence. 

Can a Riverside felony conviction be expunged?

In many cases, California felony convictions may be eligible for expunction. However, if you were convicted of a violent crime, your chances of expungement are minimal. If you were sent to state prison at any time due to your felony conviction in Riverside, you may also not be eligible to have your conviction expunged.

In order to qualify for a California felony conviction expungement, you must meet specific requirements, including being granted probation and successfully completing the terms of your probation. You must also wait a certain amount of time after you have completed the terms of your convictions sentence before you can petition to have your record expunged. For most, this means a waiting period of approximately two years before you are eligible for felony conviction expungement.

It is important to note that expungement does not completely erase your felony conviction from your record. Your criminal record will still be available to specific law enforcement officials and other necessary parties. However, your background report will not show your felony conviction to potential employers, landlords, creditors, and others who may be interested in reviewing your criminal history if your record is expunged.

Get Help From a Felony Attorney in Riverside 

When you have been arrested and charged with a felony crime in Riverside, it is going to be essential that you get an experienced felony lawyer to represent your case. 

Whether building a compelling defense strategy or working with the state to secure a plea agreement, you can be sure that your dedicated Riverside felony attorney at the Law Offices of Graham D. Donath will do everything possible to obtain a favorable outcome in your case. 

Schedule your confidential case review when you call our Orange County office at 714-758-5293 or our Riverside office at 951-667-5293. Or, complete our quick contact form, and we will reach out to you to find out more about the felony charges against you.