The 411 on Felonies & Parole Violations in Colorado
Felonies are the most serious crimes with a possible penalty of probation to life in prison or the death penalty (although not common in Colorado). Some common felonies are Arson, Assault, Burglary, Robbery, Murder, Forgery, Menacing, Possession of a Weapon by a Previous Offender, Theft, Possession, Distribution, and/or Manufacture of Controlled Substances, Manslaughter, Vehicular Assault, Vehicular Homicide, Sexual Assault, and Sexual Assault on a Child. A Class 1 Felony is punishable by Life in Prison or Death. The lower classes of felonies (Class 2 through Class 6) have presumptive sentencing and extraordinary sentencing ranges contingent upon whether aggravating circumstances exist. If the following exist, you can be sentenced under the extraordinary risk sentencing ranges: (1) you were convicted of a crime of violence under CRS § 16-11-309, (2) you were on parole for another felony at the time of commission of the felony, (3) you were on probation for another felony at the time of the commission of the felony, (4) you were under confinement, in prison or a correctional institution as a convicted felon, or was an escapee from any correctional institution for another felony at the time of the commission of a felony, or (5) at the time of commission of the felony, you were on appeal bond following conviction for a previous felony.
If the crime is a crime of violence, there are mandatory minimums that are also statutorily imposed (such as, Aggravated Robbery carries with it a mandatory minimum sentencing of 10 years). A Class 2 Felony carries a presumptive sentence of 8-24 years in DOC, unless the crime falls within the extraordinary risk crimes in which case the sentencing ranges from 4-48 years in prison. A Class 2 Felony also carries a 5 year mandatory parole. A Class 3 Felony carries a presumptive sentencing range of 4-12 years and an extraordinary range of 2-24, However, if the crime is classified as an extraordinary risk crime, the presumptive sentencing range is 4-16 and the exraordinary range is 2-32 years. A Class 3 Felony requires mandatory parole of 5 years. A Class 4 Felony carries a presumptive sentencing range of 2-6 and extraordinary range of 1-12. If the crime is in the extraordinary range, the presumptive range is 2-8 and the extraordinary range is 1-24. A Class 4 Felony carries 3 years mandatory parole. A Class 5 Felony carries a preusmptive sentencing range of 1-3 and extraordinary range of 1.5-6 years in prison. If the crime falls within the extraordinary range, the presumptive sentencing range is 1-4 and the extraordinary range is 1.5-8 years. A Class 5 Felony carries 2 years of mandatory parole. A Class 6 Felony carries a presumptive sentencing range of 1-1.5 and extraordinary range of 1.5-3 years. If the crime falls within the extraordinary sentencing range, the presumptive sentence is 1-2 and the exraordinary is 1.5-4 years in prison. A Class 6 felony carries 1 year of mandatory parole.
Extraordinary Risk Crimes are crimes that present an extraordinary risk of harm to society and, therefore, in the interest of public safety, for such crimes which constitute Class 3 felonies, the maximum sentence in the presumptive range shall be increased by four years; for such crimes which constitute Class 4 Felonies, the maximum sentence in the preusmptive range shall be increased by one year; for such crimes which constitute Class 6 felonies, the maximum sentence in the presumptive range shall be increased by six months. Crimes that present an extraordinary risk of harm to society include the following: 1) Aggravated Robbery, 2) Child Abuse, 3) Unlawful distribution, manufacturing, dispensing, sale, or possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell, distribute, manufacture, or dispense, 4) any crime of violence, 5) Stalking, and 6) Sale or distribution of materials to manufacture controlled substances.
Any person convicted of a crime of violence shall be sentenced pursuant to the provisions of section 18-1.3-401 (8) to the department of corrections for a term of incarceration of at least the midpoint in, but not more than twice the maximum of, the presumptive range provided for such offense in section 18-1.3-401 (1) (a), as modified for an extraordinary risk crime pursuant to section 18-1.3-401 (10), without suspension; except that, within ninety-one days after he or she has been placed in the custody of the department of corrections, the department shall transmit to the sentencing court a report on the evaluation and diagnosis of the violent offender, and the court, in a case which it considers to be exceptional and to involve unusual and extenuating circumstances, may thereupon modify the sentence, effective not earlier than one hundred nineteen days after his or her placement in the custody of the department. Such modification may include probation if the person is otherwise eligible therefor. Whenever a court finds that modification of a sentence is justified, the judge shall notify the state court administrator of his or her decision and shall advise said administrator of the unusual and extenuating circumstances that justified such modification. The state court administrator shall maintain a record, which shall be open to the public, summarizing all modifications of sentences and the grounds therefor for each judge of each district court in the state. A person convicted of two or more separate crimes of violence arising out of the same incident shall be sentenced for such crimes so that sentences are served consecutively rather than concurrently.
(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subsection (1), any person convicted of a sex offense, as defined in section 18-1.3-1003 (5), committed on or after November 1, 1998, that constitutes a crime of violence shall be sentenced to the department of corrections for an indeterminate term of incarceration of at least the midpoint in the presumptive range specified in section 18-1.3-401 (1) (a) (V) (A) up to a maximum of the person's natural life, as provided in section 18-1.3-1004 (1).
(2) (a) (I) "Crime of violence" means any of the crimes specified in subparagraph (II) of this paragraph (a) committed, conspired to be committed, or attempted to be committed by a person during which, or in the immediate flight therefrom, the person:
(A) Used, or possessed and threatened the use of, a deadly weapon; or
(B) Caused serious bodily injury or death to any other person except another participant.
(II) Subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (a) applies to the following crimes:
(A) Any crime against an at-risk adult or at-risk juvenile;
(C) First or second degree assault;
(E) A sexual offense pursuant to part 4 of article 3 of this title;
(F) Aggravated robbery;
(G) First degree arson;
(H) First degree burglary;
(J) Criminal extortion; or
(K) First or second degree unlawful termination of pregnancy.
(b) (I) "Crime of violence" also means any unlawful sexual offense in which the defendant caused bodily injury to the victim or in which the defendant used threat, intimidation, or force against the victim. For purposes of this subparagraph (I), "unlawful sexual offense" shall have the same meaning as set forth in section 18-3-411 (1), and "bodily injury" shall have the same meaning as set forth in section 18-1-901 (3) (c).
Always remember to expressly invoke your right to remain silent and always ask for an attorney, if questioned by law enforcement. Check out the L A W BLOG for more information on felony cases.