Misdemeanors are not as serious as felonies although they too can have serious consequences. These charges carry significant penalties, including fines, probation, community service, and even short jail sentences. Misdemeanors can include offenses such as petty theft, simple assault and battery, public intoxication, disorderly conduct, drunk driving without injury to others, various traffic violations, public nuisances, minor drug possession and some crimes which can be charged either as a felony or misdemeanor depending on the circumstances and the discretion of the District Attorney. For defense attorneys, the misdemeanor practice area demands a thorough understanding of criminal law and the ability to provide effective representation for their clients. They must carefully review evidence, interview witnesses, and build strong cases to either challenge the prosecution’s evidence or negotiate favorable plea bargains.