Criminal Law Questions? Ask a Criminal Lawyer.
All of these crimes are felonies in Arizona. Felonies are crimes that are punished by time spent in a state prison, usually in excess of one year. Criminal Impersonation and Tampering with a Public Record are both Class 6 Felonies, which are punished by 6 months to 1 1/2 years in jail. Forgery is a much more serious crime, a Class 4 Felony, and is punished by 1 1/2 to 3 years in jail.
You need to wait and see how the charges are filed against your friend. If she just received a ticket with a notice to appear on it, the charges could be filed as a misdemeanor. Normally, for a felony offense, a person is taken into custody. The court will look at the circumstances surrounding your friend case. If this is the first time your friend got caught doing this, the court may look for a probationary sentence, fine and court cost. If the sentence is going to lighter, the way the case is filed, will dictate the options available. You may want to hire an attorney to look at the facts of the case. In doing so, they may be able to find flaws in the State's case, which could persuade them into amending the charges, to a lesser crime and punishment.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).