Types of Criminal Charges in Santa Barbara
Criminal offenses are classified into the following three categories in the County of Santa Barbara criminal courts:
- Misdemeanor offenses are classified as either 1) standard misdemeanors or 2) gross or aggravated misdemeanors. California law defines the punishment as up to a 364 day jail sentence and a fine, typically $2,000 or less. Some misdemeanor charges include disorderly conduct, domestic battery, drunk in public, drug possession, DUI without injury, indecent exposure, juvenile crimes, petty theft, shoplifting, trespassing, and vandalism.
- Felony offenses are more severe and can involve a prison sentence between one year and life in prison. Judge-ordered fines can range into multiple thousands of dollars. Example felony charges include assault, battery, burglary, domestic violence, drug possession for sale, DUI involving great bodily injury, grand theft, insider trading, murder, armed robbery, sexual assault, vehicular manslaughter, violent crimes, and white-collar crimes.
- Wobbler offenses can be charged as either a misdemeanor or felony at the District Attorney’s discretion. The Prosecutor will evaluate the details of the case, defendant’s criminal record, and determine if any aggravating factors will contribute to their filing decision. Some examples of wobbler offenses include assault with a deadly weapon, battery, burglary, child endangerment, child pornography, criminal threats, DUI with injury, elder abuse, forgery, grand theft, hit-and-run, lewd acts with a minor, sexual battery, stalking, statutory rape, vandalism, and vehicular manslaughter.
In California, defendants can be sentenced under the “Three Strikes” law, which can significantly increase prison sentence length when there are multiple convictions. This law empowers judges to require that third strike offenders convicted of a serious or violent felony receive an enhanced prison sentence of 25 years to life.
Criminal Defense Practice Areas
At Chudnovsky Law, we vigorously defend clients in all phases of criminal prosecution including Police investigation, arraignment, DA negotiation, permanent and temporary restraining orders, clearing bench warrants, protective orders, bail hearings, plea negotiations, preliminary hearing, and jury trial.
If you are looking for the best criminal defense attorneys in Santa Barbara, give us a call. Our team has over 75 years of experience successfully handling every type of criminal offense, including:
- Burglary, robbery
- Corporal injury to spouse
- Criminal immigration defense
- Criminal threats
- Elder abuse and neglect
- Domestic violence, domestic battery
- Drug possession, sale, manufacture
- DUI drunk driving defense
- Felony offenses
- Grand theft, grand theft auto
- Hit and run
- Identity theft
- Insurance fraud
- Misdemeanor offenses
- Money laundering
- Prostitution, pandering
- Rape, sex crimes
- Shoplifting, petty theft
- Vehicular manslaughter
- Violent crimes
- White-collar crimes
- See all practice areas
When looking for a criminal defense attorney near me, note that we serve all areas of Santa Barbara County, including Ballard, Buellton, Carpinteria, Gaviota, Goleta, Guadalupe, Isla Vista, Lompoc, Los Alamos, Los Olivos, Mission Canyon, Mission Hills, Montecito, Orcutt, Santa Barbara, Santa Maria, Santa Ynez, Solvang, Summerland, Toro Canyon, Vandenberg Village, and the University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB).
Professional license criminal defense
Health care workers and other licensed professionals spend years obtaining their practice licenses. All it takes is one mistake to trigger an investigation and risk your reputation and career.
Registered nurse, medical, dental, engineer, pharmacy, chiropractic, and insurance license holders all need an expert professional license criminal defense lawyer to help protect their license and practice.
Attorneys Melissa DuChene, Suzanne Crouts, and Robert Weinberg are experienced criminal defense and Santa Barbara professional license defense attorneys skilled at defending both license investigations and criminal charges for all professional licensees, including:
Chudnovsky Law has the expertise to handle all criminal cases for licensed professionals including Santa Barbara nurse criminal defense, nurse drug crimes, medical license criminal defense, pharmacist criminal defense, dentist criminal defense, physician criminal defense, federal healthcare fraud crimes, pharmacist criminal defense, and sexual misconduct allegations.
Call (805) 892-8020 for a Free Consultation to review your case.
Noncitizen immigrant criminal defense
The consequences for noncitizen immigrants charged with a criminal charge are usually much more severe than for U.S. citizens. Criminal charges and even getting fingerprinted during an arrest can cause automatic visa revocations and affect permanent residency and citizenship applications. Criminal charges can trigger deportation or block reentry into the United States.
Attorney Tsion Chudnovsky is a nationally recognized Santa Barbara criminal immigration lawyer skilled at handling criminal defense and immigration issues noncitizens may face.
Tsion represents all foreign citizens, including green card holders, DACA recipients, and visa holders such as H-1b visa, international F1 student visa, E-2 visa, L-1 visa, L-2 visa, and O-1 visas when charged with any criminal offense.
Call (805) 892-8020 for a Free Consultation to get help now.
UCSB criminal defense lawyer
Chudnovsky Law represents students for criminal defense at all universities in Santa Barbara County including UCSB, Antioch University, Westmont College, and Santa Barbara City College. UCSB students arrested for criminal charges should contact Chudnovsky Law’s UCSB criminal defense lawyer.
The University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB) reported 3,749 international students in 2018, making UCSB one of the most popular international student universities in the United States. International F1 student visa criminal charges cause various complications because F1 visas are revoked for any student arrested for a misdemeanor or felony criminal charge.
International students facing criminal charges should consult with the experienced criminal defense attorney and immigration lawyers of Chudnovsky Law to minimize the effects on their ability to continue studying in the US.
Clients often hire Chudnovsky Law for pre-filing Santa Barbara investigation defense with the goal of preventing or minimizing the charges before they are even filed.
Our defense attorneys know what investigators are looking for, how they construct cases, and what strategies are most effective in protecting clients. We provide defense representation for investigations by any law enforcement agency, including:
If you have been contacted by law enforcement, call (805) 892-8020 for a Free Consultation to learn more.
Santa Barbara criminal courts
There are four criminal court locations in the Santa Barbara County Superior Court system:
Santa Barbara Superior Court (Map)
118 E. Figueroa Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
115 Civic Center Plaza
Lompoc, CA 93436-6967
Santa Maria Miller Division
312 East Cook Street, Building E
Santa Maria, CA 93454
1745 Mission Drive, Suite C
Solvang, CA 93463-3605
Contact a Santa Barbara criminal lawyer today
At Chudnovsky Law, we know what it takes to win a criminal case and protect your rights at every step in the criminal justice process. No matter what criminal charge is being brought against you, we will work to achieve the best resolution possible.
For a Free Consultation with one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys in Santa Barbara, call us today at (805) 892-8020 or contact us online.