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Criminal Offenses and Classifications
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Section 18.2-8, CODE OF VIRGINIA

Criminal offenses that are punishable with death or confinement in the penitentiary are felonies; all other offenses are misdemeanors.

Felonies: (1.2-10)

Felonies are categorized by the maximum punishment that can be imposed.

Most felonies can be classified using the following list:

  • Class 1: Death or imprisonment for life. **
  • Class 2: Imprisonment, 20 years to life. **
  • Class 3: Imprisonment, 5 to 20 years. **
  • Class 4: Imprisonment, 2 to 10 years. **
  • Class 5: Imprisonment for 1 to 10 years; or, at the discretion of the jury or court, either confinement in jail for up to 12 months or a fine not more that $2,500.00, or both penalties.
  • Class 6: Imprisonment for 1 to 5 years; or, at the discretion of the jury or court, either confinement in jail for up to 12 months or a fine not more that $2,500.00, or both penalties.

** The Court may impose both imprisonment and a fine or imprisonment only.

Misdemeanors: (18.2-11)

Misdemeanor offenses have been assigned a class designation according to the maximum punishment that can be imposed.

Most misdemeanors can be classified using the following list:

  • Class 1: Confinement in jail for up to 12 months, or a fine up to $2,500.00 or both penalties.
  • Class 2: Confinement in jail for up to 6 months, or a fine of up to $1,000.00 or both penalties.
  • Class 3: A fine not exceeding $500.00
  • Class 4: A fine not exceeding $250.00

Above information came from Code Index Reference Guide to Criminal and Traffic Sections

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