Examples of Misdemeanors

what-is-considered-a-misdemeanorMisdemeanors are a criminal act between a felony and a regulatory offense. So is the severity of the punishment. In the USA, misdemeanors can be punished with more than 12 months imprisonment, monetary fines, community service, and probation. Since they are considered a less serious crime, the offender won’t face a long prison sentence. However, the record can have a negative effect on some civil privileges and job or career prospects. An important point to make here: examples of misdemeanors can be different under different jurisdiction. And the common ones are petty theft, simple assault, trespassing, indecent exposure, speeding, vandalism, disorderly conduct, driving under the influence, domestic violence, prostitution, and the like.

Petty theft

To put it simply, theft refers to taking others’ property illegally. The severity of theft is determined by the value of the stolen things. For example, the crime between a rare treasure and a toy can be very different. Usually, the value of $500 is a dividing line. In other words, amount less than $500 is considered petty theft while amount more than that grand theft.

Public intoxication

Also called “drunk and disorderly”, public intoxication involves drunkenness in public places. This offense can be the result of using drugs or alcohol. However, not all states consider it as a misdemeanor. That’s to say, the penalties for drunk and disorderly conduct vary from state to state.

Simple assault

Simple assault includes physical and perceived violence. That’s to say, no matter you actually punch and slightly hurt someone or simply threaten while causing no physical injury, both can be considered simple assault only if you deemed to be capable of to carry out your threat. In addition, a simply assault can upgrade to a felony if it involves a weapon. Similarly, different states in the USA have different penalties to misdemeanor assault. Usually, the offender will be fined $500 and go to jail for no more than 6 months.


Simply put, it means an unlawful intrusion. Apparently, there’s a distinction between trespassing and burglary. As you know, the latter involves damaged or stolen property. In addition, it can be a trespass too if a person dumps garbage into others’ property and set up a fence onto others’ land.

Indecent exposure

Indecent exposure is a misdemeanor that has a lot of varieties. As you can see, “indecent” is an abstract word that can be used to describe lots of things. In general, it is a typical indecent exposure for individuals to display their personal part to the public.


Speeding is really easy to understand. No doubt, you will face a fine or other punishment if you drive faster than the speed limit.


This crime means a person deliberately damages other person’s things. Usually, public property is mostly involved in this case. The typical vandalism examples include deliberately knocking neighbor’s fence down, graffiti, throwing stones at windows, and so on.

Driving under the influence

It is commonly called driving while intoxicated too. Apparently, it is one of misdemeanors to operate a vehicle after the operators have used drugs or wine. The punishment depends on the times of convictions and the severity of consequences. That’s to say, the convict is given two chances to be considered as misdemeanors in DUI or DWI. And it is a felony offense if it involves criminal vehicular homicide or injury and the times exceed the limit.

Domestic violence

Domestic violence occurs between family members. The behaviors include beating, binding, confinement, mutilation, and the like. As a result, the physical, mental, sex, and other health will be harmed. By the way, the range of family members can be extended in some states. In other words, the sufferers of domestic violence include anyone who live together and even the date besides of spouses and children.


It refers to the paid service by trading sexual acts. Traditionally, this would involve some kind of direct physical contact. However, nowadays new forms like phone sex are also considered prostitution only if this act involves an economic benefit.

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