What EVERY first-time Colorado offender needs to know


Are you a first-time Colorado offender who is facing criminal charges for some kind of crime? Then it is natural for you to feel scared and apprehensive as you do not know how things may turn out for you. This is true whether you are facing felony charges or have been arrested for a misdemeanor. You may feel anxious worrying about the financial penalties associated with the charges or the jail time that you may need to serve. For this reason, it is of utmost importance that you get in touch with a criminal defense lawyer Colorado who could be of great assistance to you. A leading defense lawyer practicing in Colorado for many years has got the experience and depth of knowledge that he or she can use to develop a powerful defense strategy for any type of felony or misdemeanor case.

Important factors associated with felony and misdemeanor charges

It is important to note that both felonies and misdemeanors are treated very seriously in Colorado. However, felonies are usually considered to be more serious crimes than misdemeanors in Colorado as well as other parts of USA. Therefore it is hardly surprising that felony charges involve steeper penalties compared to misdemeanors.

There are 6 classes of felonies applicable in Colorado. The Class 1 charges of felonies are considered to be the most grievous whereas the Class 6 charges are the least critical. There are a number of crimes that may lead you to be charged with a first-time felony, such as possession and distribution of drugs; animal cruelty; theft of property; forgery; manslaughter; sexual exploitation of children; sexual assault; murder, vehicular homicide, and human trafficking just to name a few.

If you are charged with possession of drugs, it can be booked as a felony or misdemeanor based on the type and quantity of the narcotic substance you were dealing with.

Penalties associated with first-time offenders

First-time felony offenders are usually asked to serve a jail time of at least 1 year and a fine of about $100000. In some cases, there can also be life imprisonment or the death penalty for first-time felonies.

Treatment of cases for first-time offenders

First-time offenders are treated differently than repeated offenders. Colorado state law, as well as the federal, offers a number of programs that can be applicable to first-time offenders in this part of the USA. For instance, you can opt for the “Federal First Offender Act” or “Pre-trial Diversion for Colorado adults”.

Federal First Offender Act

The Federal First Offender Act allows first-time federal drug offenders to be a part of the federal diversion program. In case you do not have any kind of prior convictions for drugs at the federal or the state level, then you can go for this one. You need to be found guilty of the charges that have been brought against you for this program. Alternately, you can also plead guilty at the court of law to be eligible for the program. Once you are chosen for the program, you need to serve a year in probation and then the charges against you will be dropped without any criminal conviction.

Pre-trial Diversion for Colorado adults

This program is suitable for you if you are a first time offender for some specific criminal charges. It can involve probation and some other essential requirements. The diversion program may also be applicable to juveniles. Once the terms of the diversion are fulfilled, all traces of criminal record will be wiped out. You must consult your Denver criminal defense lawyer to know more about this program.

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