Ryan Maesen Attorney at Law

When The Stakes Are This High,
You Need A Real Defense

Skilled Criminal Defense For The Most Serious Felony Charges

Last updated on March 23, 2023

Under Michigan law, felony crimes and certain high court misdemeanors are punishable by a year or more in prison. Your freedom and future could be impacted for a long time.

Your best chance to avoid the harshest outcome lies with a proven defender who is experienced at trial. I am Ryan Maesen, a criminal defense lawyer in Grand Rapids with 15 years of experience in the local courts. I have a strong record of dismissals, acquittals and other favorable results.

Experience With Violent Crimes And Felonies

My firm, Ryan Maesen Attorney at Law, has defended every category of felony crimes. This includes high court misdemeanors that are sometimes called “two-year felonies” because of the potential prison sentence. I know what to do if you are accused of:

Experience Matters When The Stakes Are High

Some defense attorneys are too quick to pursue a plea deal. I have taken more than 85 cases to trial, including high-profile cases involving major felonies that carry up to life in prison. I explore every defense angle and every mitigating factor to spare my client from a conviction as charged.

I have found that patience and persistence pay off. Sometimes witnesses lose interest over time or turn out to be unreliable. Victims recant or their stories change. New evidence comes to light. Prosecutors soften their stance. That slow and careful approach has yielded good results, including dropped charges, reduced charges, lower sentences and acquittals at trial.

Understanding Felony Charges In Michigan

Felony charges in Michigan are divided into eight categories from Class A to Class H in descending order of seriousness.

  • Class A: carrying up to life in prison. Examples of these serious felonies include first- and second-degree murder, kidnapping, first-degree criminal sexual conduct and armed robbery.
  • Class B: carrying up to 20 years in prison. These include child pornography, second-degree arson and second-degree child abuse.
  • Class C: carrying up to 15 years in prison. Manslaughter, robbery and human trafficking resulting in injury fall into this class.
  • Class D: carrying up to 10 years in prison. Examples include larceny of property valued over $20,000, embezzlement of funds/property valued at $20,000 or more, and human trafficking.
  • Class E: carrying up to five years in prison. Examples include third-degree home invasion, first-degree retail fraud and carrying a gun/dangerous weapon with unlawful intent.
  • Class F: carrying up to four years in prison. Examples include marijuana possession of less than five kilograms and submission of unauthorized loan applications.
  • Class G: carrying up to two years in prison. These include resisting/obstructing police, writing bad checks and second-offense domestic assault.
  • Class H: carrying jail time or probation. An example includes stealing and using a state identification card to commit a felony.

A felony conviction not only results in prison time, fines and probation but also gives you a permanent criminal record. This record is accessible to the public through a background check and can hamper you when seeking employment, housing, and educational opportunities, and disqualify you for certain professional career licenses. Convicted felons also lose their gun and voting rights.

Whatever The Charges, Maesen Law Can Help

Put my many years of experience and thorough approach to work for you in seeking a positive outcome through negotiation or in court. Start with a free consultation. Call my office day or night at 616-818-0011 or use the email form. I practice regularly in Kent, Allegan and Ottawa counties, and I have litigated felony cases across Michigan.