Most charges allow for a sentence of different kinds of probation. Probation is a period of time where the judge and a probation officer watch over you and not send you to jail. A judge can order fines, costs, evaluations, treatment, community service, drugs tests, and many other conditions including up to 6 months jail as terms of a probation.
SUPERVISION - is a special type of probation that is available when there is little or no criminal history. If supervision is completed without a violation the case is then dismissed and there never is a conviction of record. 2 years after the dismissal, all records might be eligible to be expunged from public record assuming no other offenses are committed. No jail can be ordered with supervision. Supervision is not available for certain offenses.
There are some forms of “First Offender” probation or other programs available to mostly first time non-violent offenders who have substance abuse problems. These “First Offender” probations can get a case dismissed if all conditions are met. In some cases, a “First Offender” probation can prevent a criminal conviction of record and may even be expunged or sealed from public record. Without first offender probation or supervision, misdemeanors are a conviction of record. Some misdemeanor convictions can possibly be sealed from public record 4 years after to completion of the sentence assuming no other offenses are committed.
A judge can also simply enter a conviction of record without any form of probation. The judge will impose court costs and can order a period of jail on a simple conviction of record.
MISDEMEANOR SENTENCING GUIDELINES BY CLASS:
CLASS A = FINES up to $2,500; PROBATION up to 2 years; JAIL up to 364 days
CLASS B = FINES up to $1,500; PROBATION up to 2 years; JAIL up to 180 days
CLASS C = FINES up to $2,500; PROBATION up to 2 years; JAIL up to 30 days
Most jail sentences only require 50% of the time be served with good behavior. This is called “day-for-day” credit. Some offenses require 100% of the jail sentence be served.