Violent crimes are defined under South Carolina Code Section 16-1-60. Examples of violent crimes include but are not limited to murder, armed robbery, burglary, certain drug offenses, as well as certain sex offenses. Being designated as a violent crime will change how the Department of Corrections classifies a prisoner if the person is convicted. All violent crimes are felonies and carry significant consequences with many carrying mandatory minimum prison times and sentences that cannot be suspended or have probation granted. Many violent crimes are also no parole crimes meaning that you must serve at least 85 % of the sentence before being released on community supervision.
In addition to being violent crimes, certain offenses carry with them the designation of either a serious or most serious crime. Depending on a person's prior record, a serious or most serious crime conviction can be the basis for imposing a sentence of life without the possibility of parole pursuant to South Carolina Code Section 17-25-45. Before making decisions that will potentially impact the rest of your life, get an experienced criminal defense lawyer on your side. Remember the State has the burden of proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt and you are presumed innocent of the crime until the States proves otherwise.
Certain defenses such as alibi and mental health defenses must be pled through written pleadings or they are not allowed. Also any information that you are wanting to use in court that you have in your possession must be turned over to the other side in advance of trial or you won't be able to use it in trial.