Crimes are classified according to the level of their seriousness. Felonies are serious offenses that are met with severe punishment. In New York, felonies are rated from A to E with A class felonies attracting the most severe punishments. B class felonies are further subdivided into B violent felonies and B non-violent felonies.
New York Class B Violent Felonies
Generally, felonies attract more serious punishments than misdemeanors or infractions. The least class of felony in New York is the E class, which attracts a minimum of one year in jail. Class B violent felonies in New York include offenses like assault in the first degree, aggravated sexual abuse in the first degree, criminal use of firearm in the first degree and first-degree criminal possession of weapon. Other crimes that are classified as class B violent felonies in New York include first-degree sodomy, second-degree kidnapping, first-degree assault and first-degree manslaughter.
Punishment for New York Class B Violent Felonies
The punishment for class B felony crime in New York is a jail term of between five years and 25. This term increases to between a minimum of 10 years and a maximum of 30 years if the victim of the aggravated assault was a member of the police force or a peace officer. A term of 10 to 30 years also applies to cases of aggravated manslaughter. The exact number of years the offender will serve depends on a number of factors like whether the offense was violent or non-violent and the criminal history of the offender, because repeat offenders get tougher sentences. The judge also has some discretion in sentencing an offender after examining the facts of each individual case. Apart from jail terms, offenders who commit Class B felonies in New York lose their civil rights to vote, serve in the military and run for office. They may also have their driver's license suspended or revoked.
Class B Non-Violent crimes
Class B non-violent crimes in New York include aggravated insurance fraud, first-degree bribery, first-degree possession of stolen property and second-degree conspiracy. Other non-violent B felonies include first-degree welfare fraud, first-degree possession of stolen substances and other white-collar crimes like first-degree bribery. The difference between this type of B felony and the violent B felony is the absence of the use of force or violence.
Punishment for Class B Non-Violent Felonies
The punishment for a non-violent class B felony in New York is between three years and 25 years in jail. Also, the sentencing judge will take into consideration factors like prior criminal convictions, which may reduce the actual number of years the offender will serve in jail. Generally, sentencing for class B non-violent offenses without prior criminal record is more lenient than that for those convicted of violent class B felonies.