10 Most Common Criminal Charges

Crime is a part of our lives, whether we like it or not. After all, without the bad there can be no good. Here are ten of the most common criminal charges in the US, in no particular order:

  1. Drug Charges. Drug charges include possession, use, and any stage of the manufacturing process of drugs. In the US, this is becoming more of a big deal than we may think it is. Believe it or not, according to the FBI, there is a drug arrest made in the US every 18 seconds. Most of these arrests are for being in possession of drugs.
  2. Drunken Charges. That long weekend could get you into some deep trouble if you aren’t careful.  The U.S. Department of Justice stated that in 2010 40% of violent crimes committed in the U.S. involved alcohol abuse. These numbers do not include drinking and driving either. 31% of all driving fatalities in 2010 were due to alcohol-impaired drivers.
  3. Sexual Assault Charges. One of the largest criminal offenses that take place in the US is sexual assault charges. About 1 in 4 women have been raped in their life.
  4. Petty Theft. Petty theft is another word for shoplifting, and it is the most common crime in the entire United States. It happens so often that it is not unlikely to find out someone got away with it.
  5. Property Crime. Property crime includes burglary, theft, motor vehicle theft, arson, and vandalism. We all know these crimes happen, but how many offenses do you think happen each year? Well, in 2010 over 9 million accounts of property crime were reported. Makes you wonder when the last time you checked your locks, doesn’t it?
  6. Aggravated Assault. Aggravated assault is when someone inflicts severe harm on another purposefully, usually performed with some sort of weapon. In 2010 there were over three-quarters of a million cases of aggravated assault in the U.S. It must be time to take those self-defense classes.
  7. Bank Crime. Bank crime, most commonly referred to as bank robbery, has some astounding numbers to it. Over $9 million was stolen from banks in 2010 alone. 21% of the loot was recovered.
  8. Child Abuse. In 2011 almost 700,000 children were victims of malnutrition, according to the National Children’s Alliance.
  9. White Collar Crime. In 2010 about 1 in 4 of households in the US were victims of white collar crime.  Americans are affected by white collar crimes more than all other forms of crimecombined!
  10. Hate Crime. According to the FBI, in 2010 there were about 7,700 offenses involving hate crimes.

There will always be crime, and always be laws to follow. As each develops, so will the other. As these are serious crimes, those falsely accused of them can face severe consequences if they are not careful and do not have proper legal representation. This is the reason we have criminal defense lawyers: to protect the rights of those who need it.

Ryan Gavin is an associate with Blackford & Flohr, a Maryland criminal defense and general law firm.  He is an advocate for the law and believes that every individual deserves their day in court.