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If you are facing felony charges, you may feel nervous, confused, and unsure of what you should do next. What’s a felony under Colorado state law? What consequences will you face? Should you hire an attorney?

A felony is a serious crime category in Colorado State, above petty offenses or misdemeanors. Being charged and convicted on a felony has far-reaching, public consequences. However, it doesn’t mean that your life is over. Having an experienced felony attorney can mean the difference between spending years in prison for a crime you didn’t commit and securing your freedom.

Types of felonies

Felony charges fall under six categories, with legal penalties ranging from a year in prison to life imprisonment. These classifications are not set on stone. Different aggravating factors, the involvement of other entities, and multiple convictions might change the classification of the specific crime you are charged with.

For instance, if you didn’t register as a sex offender once, you will likely be charged with a class 6 felony. If you fail to register twice, you are likely to face class 5 felony. Another example is when one is charged with assault. First-degree assault is a class 3 felony while fourth, third, or second falls under class 4 felony.

Class 6 felony 

These crimes are considered serious felonies. The penalty for these crimes is 12 to 18 months in prison and a fine ranging from $1,000 to $100,000. Examples of these crimes include;

  • Animal cruelty
  • Promoting a pyramid scheme
  • Failure to register (first time) as a sex offender
  • Possession of weapons if you had been convicted of a felony previously
  • Practicing a profession without the required license
  • Impersonating a peace officer
  • Possession of schedule I or II drugs (four grams or less)

Class 5 Felony 

In Colorado, class 5 felony involves slightly more serious crimes compared to class 6 felony crimes. The penalty for these crimes is 12 to 36 months in prison. The offender may also face fines ranging from $1,000 to $100,000. Common examples of these crimes include;

  • False imprisonment
  • Forgery
  • Property theft
  • Sale of five or fewer pounds of marijuana
  • A second offense involving animal cruelty
  • Embezzlement of public resources
  • Refusal to pay child support or spousal support

Class 4 felony 

Crimes classified as class 4 felony are punishable by 2 years to 6 years’ imprisonment. The offender may also face $2,000 to $500,000. Common examples of these crimes include.

  • Manslaughter
  • Identity theft
  • Sexual assault
  • The unlawful purchase of a firearm
  • Vehicular homicide
  • Perjury (firs degree)

Class 3 felony 

A conviction of any crime classified as a class 3 felony can result in a 4-12-year sentence in state prison and $3,000 to $750,000 fine. Examples of these crimes include;

  • Arson (first degree)
  • Pimping
  • Assault (first degree)
  • Burglary (first degree)
  • Money laundering

Class 2 felonies

These crimes are punishable by 8-24 years’ imprisonment. The accused may also face a fine ranging from $5,000 to $1,000,000. Common examples of class 2 felonies include;

  • Human trafficking
  • Murder (second degree)
  • Racketeering activities

Class 1 felony 

Any crime in this category is considered very serious and is punishable by the death penalty or life imprisonment. Examples of class 1 felonies include treason and murder (first degree).

Contact a Criminal Defense Lawyer

Like all other states, Colorado State divides crimes into misdemeanors and felonies. The latter is considered a serious crime. If you are facing such charges, it is in your best interest to work with an experienced Denver criminal defense attorney who can defend your rights.



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