Download this document in MS Word format

AutoFill Template


Introduced by   Representative Pillsbury of Brattleboro

Referred to Committee on


Subject:  Criminal procedure; public defenders

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to permit the court to appoint a public defender for any criminal offense.


It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  13 V.S.A. § 5201 is amended to read:


In this chapter, the term:

* * *

(4)  “Serious crime” includes:

(A)  A felony;

(B)  A misdemeanor the maximum penalty for which is a fine of more than $1,000.00 or any period of imprisonment unless the judge, at the arraignment but before the entry of a plea, determines and states on the record that he will not sentence the defendant to a fine of more than $1,000.00 or a period of imprisonment if the defendant is convicted of the misdemeanor; and

(C)  An act that, but for the age of the person involved, would be a serious crime means any criminal offense.

(5)  “Serious crime” does not include the following misdemeanor offenses unless the judge at arraignment but before the entry of a plea determines and states on the record that a sentence of imprisonment or a fine over $1,000.00 may be imposed on conviction:

(A)  Minors misrepresenting age, procuring or possessing malt or vinous beverages or spirituous liquor (7 V.S.A. § 657(a))

(B)  Big game violations (10 V.S.A. § 4518)

(C)  Simple assault by mutual consent (13 V.S.A. § 1023(b))

(D)  Bad checks (13 V.S.A. § 2022)

(E)  Petit larceny (13 V.S.A. § 2502)

(F)  Theft of services under $500.00 (13 V.S.A. § 2582)

(G)  Retail theft under $100.00 (13 V.S.A. § 2577)

(H)  Unlawful mischief (13 V.S.A. § 3701(c))

(I)  Unlawful trespass (13 V.S.A. § 3705(a))

(J)  Disorderly conduct (13 V.S.A. § 1026)

(K)  Possession of marijuana-first offense (18 V.S.A. § 4230(a)(1))

(L)  Violation of municipal ordinances.

Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont