Colorado Springs Felony FAQs
What Is a Felony?
A felony is any crime punishable by imprisonment lasting one year or longer. Commonly known types of felonies include murder, robbery, arson, kidnapping, and selling certain illegal drugs.
To set up a free initial consultation with an experienced felony defense attorney, e-mail us or call us at 719-475-2555 today.
What's The Difference Between a Felony and a Misdemeanor?
A misdemeanor is a crime that is generally considered less serious than a felony, but is still a behavior the law seeks to prevent. Both felonies and misdemeanors are crimes, but the punishment for a misdemeanor is typically limited to less than a year. Most people serving time for a misdemeanor are held in county jails, while those serving time for a felony are held in state or federal prisons.
What Are the Different Classes of Felonies in Colorado? I've Heard My Case Referred to as an "F3" Or Similar Number - What Does This Mean?
Colorado felonies are arranged by class, with class 1 or "F1" felonies being the most serious and class 6 or "F6" felonies being the least serious. The classes are used in sentencing to set the length of any prison sentence and/or the amount of any fines. Judges and attorneys may refer to the class of a felony by its number, such as "F3," as a shorthand way of saying "class 3 felony."
I’ve Been Charged With a Felony in Colorado. What Is Going To Happen in My Case?
The first step in a Colorado felony case is the filing of charges. At this stage, you will get a chance to hear the charges against you and enter a plea. It's wise to enter a plea of "not guilty" at this point, since you likely haven't had a chance to investigate your case yet. However, consulting with a defense lawyer before entering a plea is advised. A bail amount may also be set, along with a date for your preliminary hearing, if applicable.
What Is a Preliminary Hearing?
Anyone charged with a class 3 or higher felony in Colorado has a right to a preliminary hearing. The preliminary hearing is held in court, and its purpose is to give the prosecutor a chance to show that, more likely than not, a crime occurred, and it is more likely than not, that you committed it. To do this, the prosecutor may call witnesses or submit evidence to the court, similar to the way these things are done in a full-fledged trial. It is extremely important to have an experienced Colorado Springs felony defense lawyer on your side during this process in order to counter the prosecutor's version of events and to protect your legal rights during the hearing.
Will I Need to Have a Disposition Hearing?
It depends. If you're charged with a class 4, 5, or 6 felony, you have a right to a disposition hearing, which gives your attorney the chance to talk to the prosecuting attorney and gives you the chance to plead guilty or no contest, if you wish to do so. It is best to have an attorney at this stage who can protect you from making any incriminating statements to the prosecutor that might hurt your case later.
Are Pre-Trial Hearings Necessary?
Before your trial, there may be one or more pre-trial hearings, especially if the facts in your case indicate your constitutional rights have been violated. Your attorney and the prosecutor will discuss issues related to evidence and other aspects of your case with the judge in order to ensure that any violations of your rights are addressed before they can do any more damage to your case and to correct any existing damage.
What Do I Need to Know About a Felony Trial?
Your trial is the stage at which the prosecutor must prove your guilt in court. Each criminal charge in Colorado is broken down into basic parts called elements. The prosecutor is responsible for proving each element of each charge beyond a reasonable doubt. If he cannot do so, you cannot be convicted. Meanwhile, your Colorado criminal defense attorney fights to ensure that your rights are recognized and that any holes in the prosecutor's case are made clear to the judge and jury.
If you are convicted of a felony at trial, you will move on to the sentencing phase, in which the court decides what penalties you must face as a result of your conviction. Felony penalties typically include imprisonment and fines, though they may also include probation, community corrections, and other options, depending on the circumstances of your case. You may also be able to appeal your Colorado felony sentence.
I've Been Accused of a Felony in Colorado. What Should I Do?
Seek the help of a Colorado felony defense lawyer as soon as possible. The sooner an experienced defense attorney begins working on your case, the more time you and your attorney have to address any constitutional rights violations and build an aggressive defense that fights for the best possible outcome in your case.
Attorney Timothy Bussey has served as both a Colorado prosecutor and an Air Force Judge Advocate. Now, as an experienced Colorado Springs felony criminal defense attorney, Mr. Bussey at The Bussey Law Firm, P.C. provides aggressive legal defenses to those accused of felonies in Colorado. Contact the firm today at (719) 475-2555 for a free and confidential consultation.
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