In Colorado, there are three types of crimes: felonies, misdemeanors, and petty offenses. Being charged with any crime can be overwhelming, but there are degrees of seriousness based on the type of crime charged.
While misdemeanors are charged for less serious crimes, if you are convicted of this type of offense, the impact on your life can be significant. A misdemeanor conviction for disorderly conduct may not land you in jail, but it could prevent you from getting jobs or housing, or even advancing in your career.
McCabe Law understands that every client facing criminal charges deserves personal service, compassion, and a fierce advocate. Our practice is devoted to working with people just like you, who have found themselves in a difficult position and are looking for help.
Based in Boulder, we represent clients in counties throughout Colorado, including Boulder, Broomfield, Adams, Arapahoe, Jefferson, Larimer, Weld, and Denver Counties. Contact our firm today at 720-328-0739 or online to schedule a consultation with an experienced Boulder misdemeanor defense attorney.
What Is a Misdemeanor?
In Colorado, a misdemeanor is a criminal offense that is less serious than a felony, but more significant than a petty offense. It is defined in part by its punishment: up to 18 months in jail, misdemeanor probation, and/or a fine of up to $5,000. Not everyone who is convicted of a misdemeanor will be sent to jail; many misdemeanor convictions will result in a fine and/or probation.
For each type of misdemeanor, there are subcategories. This includes class 1, 2 and 3 regular misdemeanors, DM1 and DM2 drug misdemeanors and class 1, class 2 and unclassified traffic misdemeanors.
An example of a class 1 regular misdemeanor is aggravated motor vehicle theft, which is the theft of the motor vehicle where the value of the car is less than $1,000. A class 2 regular misdemeanor (which is less serious than a class 1) may include criminal mischief, with damage of at least $300, but less than $750. Finally, a class 3 regular misdemeanor is a crime such as disorderly conduct.
Sentencing for Misdemeanors in Colorado
In Colorado, there is a presumptive sentencing range for each type and class of misdemeanor. The state also recognizes that some misdemeanors that in some cases, the punishment for a misdemeanor should be enhanced. The most common enhancement is when a misdemeanor is classified as an “extraordinary risk crime.”
The presumptive sentencing range for misdemeanors depends on the class of the offense and the facts of the case. For regular misdemeanors, the following sentences apply:
- Class 1 (extraordinary risk): 6 to 24 months, and/or a fine of $500 to $5,000
- Class 1: 6 to 18 months, and/or a fine of $500 to $5,000
- Class 2: 3 to 12 months and/or a fine of $250 to $1,000
- Class 3: up to 6 months, and/or a fine of $50 to $750
For drug misdemeanors, a person may be sentenced to probation, or may face 6 to 18 months in jail and/or a fine of between $500 and $5,000 for a DM1. For a DM2 offense, there is no jail time and a fine of between $50 and $750. All misdemeanor drug offenses are also subject to an additional surcharge of up to $1,000.
If probation is ordered, you will not be required to go to jail, as long as you comply with the conditions of probation. These terms will vary, but typically includes paying restitution, being supervised by a probation officer, not committing any other crimes, not owning or possessing a weapon, and if necessary, attending drug treatment or anger management classes.
Work with a Misdemeanor Defense Attorney
Misdemeanor crimes may not be as serious as felony offenses, but they can still have a significant impact on your life. Not only do they have the potential to result in jail time, but a conviction for a misdemeanor crime also means having a criminal record. That is why it is so important to retain a seasoned lawyer to defend you against these charges.
At McCabe Law, we represent clients on a range of misdemeanor Colorado offenses, from DUI to assault to child abuse to vehicle theft. Attorney Janene K. McCabe has nearly 20 years of experience working as a criminal defense lawyer, including as a public defender. Our team will advocate for your rights, and stand by your side throughout the process.