In Colorado, the most serious crime that you can be charged with is a felony. The state divides felonies into six classifications from Class 1 to Class 6, with a Class 1 being the most serious. So, if you’ve been charged with a Class 2 felony, your situation may be dire, and it’s vital that you understand the potential penalties that may be associated with a conviction.
What are Class 2 Felonies in Colorado?
Colorado law specifies the crimes that qualify as Class 2 felonies. The list is long, but this is a fairly comprehensive representation of the crimes that are included in this class:
- Any attempt to commit a class 1 felony (such as capital murder);
- Criminal solicitation (attempting to persuade another person to commit a Class 1 felony);
- Second-degree murder;
- First-degree kidnapping, if the victim was freed and unharmed;
- Sexual assault, if threats or deadly weapons are used, if the victim suffers serious bodily harm, and/or if the defendant was physically aided by another person;
- Aggravated robbery of controlled substances;
- Theft of property valued at $1 million or more;
- Trafficking of illegal aliens;
- Inducing a child to commit prostitution;
- Certain crimes against at-risk juveniles;
- Certain racketeering activities;
- A second or subsequent use of GHB;
- Knowingly using, giving, sending, or mailing an explosive or incendiary device (includes biological, radiological, and chemical weapons); and
- Knowingly escaping after confinement for a Class 1 or 2 felony.
Penalties for a Class 2 Felony in Colorado
If you are convicted of a Class 2 felony in Colorado, the penalties can be severe. These include a minimum of 8 years in prison up to a maximum of 24 years. There are also fines ranging from $5,000-$1 million.
Felonies involving drugs have different penalties. The prison sentence for a Class 2 drug felony ranges from 4-8 years, but it goes up to 8-16 years for an aggravated charge. Fines range from $3,000-$750,000 in addition to the drug offender surcharge fine ranging from $1,500-$4,500.
These sentencing guidelines can be increased if the courts find that you are a habitual offender.
What are Enhanced Felony Sentences?
Colorado law also specifies a number of situations in which the “normal” (presumptive) range of penalties can be increased. Some of the most common enhance circumstances include:
- An aggravated offense;
- An extraordinary risk crime;
- A crime of violence; or
- A felony committed while on felony probation.
If you are convicted of an extraordinary risk crime in Colorado, the maximum possible sentence could increase by up to two years. These crimes include:
- Child abuse;
- All violent crimes;
- Aggravated robbery; and
- Unlawful manufacturing, dispensing, distribution, possession, or sale of a controlled substance with the intent to dispense, distribute, or sell.
If You’ve Been Arrested for a Class 2 Felony in Colorado
Law enforcement officers and prosecutors often use the tactic of threatening serious felony charges and then offering the arrested party an “opportunity” to plead guilty to a lesser charge. Agreeing to this is a terrible idea until you first discuss your case with a seasoned criminal defense attorney.
In many cases, those higher charges are nothing short of an intimidation tactic. Prosecutors may not be able to meet the requirements for proving the crime and securing a conviction.
Prematurely agreeing to something just to end your case can have life-altering consequences. You may be sent to prison and face steep fines. Further, a conviction can impact your ability to get certain jobs, hold professional licenses, and even find a place to live.
Just like anyone else in this country, you have rights. Your criminal defense attorney can review your case and note any weaknesses in the state’s case. We will attack any mistakes made by the police or weak evidence to secure the best possible outcome in your case.
Aggressive Colorado Springs Felony Defense
If you’re facing a Class 2 felony charge in Colorado Springs, this is a serious situation. The prosecution might offer you a plea bargain, but this may not be in your best interests.
At Anderson & Carnahan, Attorneys at Law, our criminal defense attorneys have over 50 years of combined legal experience defending clients against the most serious legal charges. As former District Attorneys, we are intimately familiar with this state’s laws and legal procedures, and we are ideally positioned to provide clients with the best defense possible.
Never assume that you can handle felony charges on your own. There is too much at stake. Contact our office today at (719) 473-9099 to schedule a free initial consultation.