Colorado Violent Crime Laws
What are violent crimes?
Colorado violent crime laws state that violent crimes, obviously enough, are felonies that involve violence or weapons. They include, but are not limited to:
- First and Second Degree Assault
- Armed robbery
- Second degree Murder
- Sexual assault
- First Degree Burglary
Being charged with a “crime of violence” is a serious matter!
In Colorado, serious felonies can be designated as ”crimes of violence”. Serious felonies already carry severe consequences. However, as we will see in a moment, these severe consequences can escalate even further if it is a crime of violence!
What happens if you are convicted?
Crimes of violence are serious offenses with severe consequences that include mandatory prison time. In other words, the judge will have to sentence you to prison if you are convicted. Furthermore, the prison term for a crime of violence must be at least at the midpoint for that felony’s “presumptive range”.
For example, if the presumptive range for a crime is four to sixteen years, then the midpoint is 10 years. So if the offense is charged as a crime of violence or is a crime of violence, then a conviction would result in a prison sentence of at least 10 years.
Prison sentences for crimes of violence can escalate dramatically!
Not only do crimes of violence carry a minimum, mandatory prison sentence, they also double the maximum prison time possible. For example, a felony that normally carries a maximum prison sentence of 16 years could result in jail time of 32 years if it is designated as a crime of violence.
Furthermore, if a dangerous weapon was used during the felony, then there can be an additional mandatory five-year sentence.
Finally, the mandatory prison sentences for crimes of violence can stack up. So if you are convicted of more than one crime of violence, then you can be ordered to serve the first mandatory prison sentence before the second one even begins. Any additional prison time for using a dangerous weapon will stack on top of all of that!
Prison is not the only consequence!
Apart from all of these immediate consequences, a violent crime conviction can also have a lifelong impact. It will be placed on your permanent record and can sabotage future career opportunities. Furthermore, the stigma of a violent crime conviction can damage your reputation and undermine your personal relationships.
Should you seek legal assistance?
An experienced criminal defense attorney is absolutely essential! If you are charged with a violent crime then you can expect to face a hostile prosecutor who will be seeking the toughest sentence possible. The jury members will almost certainly be unsympathetic since their natural instinct will be to side with the victim.
You need someone who can remain calm amidst this extreme stress and aggressively defend you!
A highly experienced criminal defense attorney, like Kevin Pauly, is an invaluable ally. For more than a decade, he has exclusively defended those facing criminal charges in Colorado. He has completed over 60 jury trials and was named Attorney of the Year in 2007 for the Denver Trial Office of the Colorado State Public Defender. Kevin understands the intense fear and confusion of being charged with a crime of violence, and has the courtroom experience to identify the legal strategies to help you.