Misdemeanor Guide

Colorado Misdemeanor

Colorado misdemeanors reside in three classes. In these classes the amount of jail time to be served is determined.

Class One Misdemeanor - jail time up to eighteen months imprisonment.
Class Two Misdemeanor - less severe and holds jail time up to twelve months.
Class Three Misdemeanor - the shortest amount of time and is only jail time up to six months.

Extraordinary Risk Crimes
If an individual is charges with an Extraordinary Risk Crime, then a Class One Misdemeanor sentencing of eighteen months can be elevated to twenty-four months.

At times these Extraordinary Risk Crimes are not just Class One Misdemeanors, they simply mean a judge can give a maximum sentence in that specific class. These crimes are not limited to but include third degree assault, child abuse, unlawful sexual contact, and the violation of a restraining order on a second or more offense.

Misdemeanor Classifications
In Colorado misdemeanors are broken down into different classifications. General misdemeanors include criminal mischief of less than one hundred dollars, computer crime, criminal mischief of more than one hundred but less than five hundred dollars, disorderly conduct, harassment, menacing, forgery, criminal tampering, false imprisonment, perjury, trespassing, stalking, resisting arrest, obstructing a peace officer, and theft.

Driving misdemeanors include careless driving resulting in death and careless driving resulting in injury. Drug misdemeanors include the possession of marijuana of more than one ounce but less than eight ounces and possession of a schedule V controlled substance. Child abuse, third degree assault, and domestic violence fall under assault misdemeanors. Sexual misdemeanors are rare - these are usually charged as felonies.

Misdemeanor Prosecution
Both state and municipal courts prosecute misdemeanors. Unlike the state courts, municipal courts do not usually have classes of misdemeanors. Instead municipal courts see all misdemeanors punishable with an equal maximum punishment. State courts have divided classes of misdemeanors. Class One Misdemeanors are the most severe and have the highest possible sentencing while a Class Three Misdemeanor has the lowest possible sentence.

If a person is convicted for more than one misdemeanor he or she can have all the charges added together to make them consecutive sentences. This decision is made by a judge. Alternatively, a judge can allow all the charges to be served at the same time (essentially cutting down the length of the sentence). You should definitely hire a good attorney to protect you if you are facing multiple charges.

A judge can also give a sentencing that is more severe in felony court. Additional sentences can be given that include not being allowed to carry a firearm, loss of driver's license, and several weeks of provided classes.

Colorado Misdemeanor Expungement
Colorado, unlike other states, does not allow expungement. Instead Colorado provides petitioning for a permanent sealing on records. After a record is sealed it can be said that a crime or arrest never took place. Police must then standby this acknowledgment.

Records can only be sealed if a person was not founded guilty, a case was dismissed before trial, or a deferred sentence was received with compliance with all terms. A person cannot seal records if found guilty or pleading guilty in trial, no matter the span of time in between. Some crimes, including domestic violence, cannot be sealed. At times a deferred sentence cannot be sealed, depending on the judge.

To petition, an individual must consult an attorney and file the proper paperwork. An attorney will be able to sight eligibility and assist if necessary.

See also:
Colorado Felony External link (opens in new window)
Colorado Expungement External link (opens in new window)
Colorado Gun Laws External link (opens in new window)