Legal Glossary: Felony


A felony is a category of crime that is considered to be more serious than a misdemeanor.

In California, felonies have a minimum sentence of one year in prison and a maximum penalty of death. Some crimes, called “straight felonies,” cannot be reduced or pleaded down to misdemeanors and may count as strikes against your record relative to California’s three strikes statute. Some felonies are considered “wobbler” felonies that can either be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor at the prosecutor’s discretion.

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