When men and women are convicted of a crime, at sentencing a judge must decide whether to give a prison or county jail sentence. Judges are sometimes required by the law or circumstances to impose a period of incarceration (county jail or prison) rather than probation. Here are some general guidelines on the sentencing ranges judges have to choose from. Read more about Concurrent and Consecutive Sentencing when more than one conviction is possible.
Felony Crime Possible Prison Sentence Range
Only felony convictions are susceptible to Colorado Department of Corrections prison sentencing. Here is the range of sentences a judge can chose from:
- Class One Felony – Life imprisonment or death
- Class Two Felony – 8 years to 24 years DOC
- Class Three Felony – 4 years to 12 years DOC
- Class Four Felony – 2 years to 6 years DOC
- Class Five Felony – 1year to 3 years DOC
- Class Six Felony – 1 year to 18 months DOC
It is important to know that some crimes are called Extraordinary Risk Crimes, and as a result the upper limit on a possible Department of Corrections Sentence is increased. Talk with your criminal defense attorney at our office to determine whether your felony offense is an Extraordinary Risk Crime.
Misdemeanor Crimes Possible County Jail Sentences
Sentencing in Misdemeanor cases invokes a possible sentence to the county jail where the crime occurred. Felonies can have a county jail sentence only as a condition of probation, and of limited duration.
- Class One Misdemeanor – 6 months to 18 months in the Jefferson County Jail
- Class Two Misdemeanor – 3 months to 12 months in the Arapahoe County Jail
- Class Three Misdemeanor – No jail to 6 months in the Denver County Jail
Please note that some class one misdemeanor crimes are Extraordinary Risk Crimes, and as a result the maximum county jail sentence possible is 24 months. Your criminal defense lawyer at the O’Malley Law Office can tell you what crimes qualify for this designation.
Petty Crime Possible County Jail Sentences
- Class One Petty Offense – up to 6 months in the Adams County Jail
- Class Two Petty Offense – fine only
Each crime has unique circumstances which may cause its sentencing range to vary from the outline listed above. In some cases, for example, a court can impose a county jail sentence as a condition of probation. When work release is factored in, a judge can impose up to 2 years of work release in addition to a probation sentence. In cases where more than one crime is charged, it is possible to be sentenced on more than one count. These sentences can be served at the same time or one after the other. Talk with your defense attorney at our law firm to know for sure what your exposure is.
Judges can impose a probation, county jail or prison sentence as a punitive sanction in most every case. The strength of the government’s case against you will usually increase the likely punishment. So, never help the District Attorney prosecute you by talking with police. The police are not your friend and are not looking for the truth. Call the best criminal defense lawyers at 303-731-0719, today. Together, we can protect your future.