Rhode Island’s Misdemeanor Laws

What is a Misdemeanor?

Rhode Island organizes misdemeanors into two basic types: misdemeanors and petty misdemeanors. Each category of crime has maximum penalties associated with it, though individual crimes may have maximum penalties that are less than the category allows. Anyone convicted of a misdemeanor offense in Rhode Island faces a fine of not more than $1,000 and an incarceration sentence of no more than one year, while someone convicted of a petty misdemeanor in Rhode Island faces a maximum of six months incarceration and a fine of no more than $500. In addition to misdemeanors, there are also civil violations.  A civil violation means that it is not a criminal offense and no jail time is possible.  However, there is a fine and the possibility of other sanctions, such as loss of license. Although a misdemeanor is a lesser crime than a felony (minimum one year in prison and up to life in prison) it is still a serious matter and you always need to consult with an experienced criminal defense lawyer whenever you’re charged with a crime. Even if you haven’t been charged, but have only been approached by investigators, you should contact a criminal defense attorney immediately.  Attorney Peter Calo will protect your rights and provide legal advice at every step of the criminal justice process.   What makes Attorney Peter Calo unique is that as a police officer for twenty-five years, he has made thousands of misdemeanors arrests.  He knows better than anyone the requirements and technicalities of a crime.  His experience allows him to view an arrest report very differently than most defense attorneys.  This will be a huge advantage for you when Attorney Peter Calo is your attorney. Contact him today for a free consultation The following is a list of the more common misdemeanor, petty misdemeanor crimes and civil violations.  Click on the title of the crime for a full description of the crime and how Attorney Peter Calo can best defend you for that crime.  Click on the statute number for a direct link to the Rhode Island Criminal Offenses website for that particular crime.


Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs (DUI)  R.I.G.L. § 31-27-2

Simple Assault or Battery  R.I.G.L. §11-5-3

Larceny  R.I.G.L. §11-41-1

Shoplifting  R.I.G.L. §11-41-20

Vandalism  R.I.G.L. §11-44-1

Trespassing  R.I.G.L. §11-44-26

Obstruction of Justice  R.I.G.L. §11-32-1

Indecent Exposure  R.I.G.L.§11-45-2

Possession of Marijuana More than One Ounce  R.I.G.L. §21-28-4.01

Procurement of Alcohol to Minor R.I.G.L. §3-8-11.1

Petty Misdemeanors and Civil Violations

Disorderly Conduct R.I.G.L.§11-45-1

Misrepresentation of Age R.I.G.L. §3-8-6

Possession of Alcohol by Minor R.I.G.L. §3-8-10

Refusal to Submit to Chemical Test R.I.G.L. § 31-27-2.1

Possession of Marijuana One Ounce or Less R.I.G.L. §21-28-4.01

Should you be charged with one of these crimes, contact Peter Calo today for a free consultation!