Expanding Misdemeanor Charges: Aggravating Factors and Legal Implications in Colorado

If you are up against misdemeanor charges in Colorado, this is something that can come with severe consequences if the charges stick. You will need to understand what misdemeanor charges are and the different factors that could impact what these charges mean. Like other types of charges in Colorado, different aggravating factors and legal defenses will be taken into consideration.

If you are facing misdemeanor charges, you need to hire a criminal defense lawyer in Colorado Springs who can help you navigate this complex legal process. A criminal defense attorney can instruct you on your rights, build a defense strategy, and help you to get reduced charges.

Understanding Misdemeanor Charges in Colorado

When it comes to misdemeanor charges in Colorado, these are considered mid-tier crimes just below felonies. There are two classes of misdemeanor charges: class 1, which is the most serious, and class 2.

Misdemeanor charges encompass many different types of crimes as they are more of a classification regarding the severity of the crime, not the kind of crime. Some examples of possible misdemeanor charges include assault, harassment, driving under the influence, criminal mischief, criminal tampering, theft of property, criminal attempt, or indecent exposure, just to name a few.

If you are up against class 1 misdemeanor charges, this can come with up to 364 days in jail and up to $1000 in fines. For a class 2 misdemeanor, the consequences are up to 120 days in jail and up to $750 in fines.

The good news is that sealing records for misdemeanor convictions in Colorado happens two years after the case has been closed. If the charges are dismissed, the case will be sealed right away. Misdemeanor convictions, including traffic crimes, sex offender crimes, DUIs, and domestic violence, are never sealed.

Factors Considered in Misdemeanor Charges

Although certain consequences usually come with Colorado misdemeanor charges, aggravating factors can impact this. Aggravating factors are classified as details about the crime or your history that make the charges more serious.

Here are some examples of aggravating factors that could lead to more severe legal implications:

  • Criminal history
  • Use of a weapon
  • Causing injury to the victim
  • Lack of remorse

There are also mitigating factors that have the opposite effect of aggravating factors. These are factors that work in your favor and can help you to get reduced charges. This includes things like:

  • Clean criminal record
  • Willingness to rehabilitate
  • Cooperating with law enforcement
  • Showing remorse
  • Enrolling in programs for rehabilitation and

Defense Strategies For Misdemeanor Charges in Colorado

Because misdemeanor charges include such a large group of possible crimes, there is no single defense strategy that is the perfect fit for every situation. This is why it is so crucial that you hire a criminal defense attorney in Colorado who can help you create the best defense for your case.

A criminal defense lawyer in Colorado Springs will evaluate the details of the case to look for errors or gaps in evidence that could help them build a defense that will work in your favor. Here are some examples of common defense strategies lawyers use for Colorado misdemeanor charges.

The Defendant is Innocent

One of the most common defense strategies for misdemeanor charges is proving that the defendant is innocent. You may have an alibi that puts you in a completely different place at the time of the crime. Or there may be evidence that you had no intention or reason to commit the crime.

The Search or Arrest Wasn’t Legal

Another very common defense strategy is proving that your constitutional rights were violated. This will apply if the evidence against you was obtained unconstitutionally through things like an illegal search or seizure. Law enforcement may not have had the right to search you, which would throw out any evidence they collected.

Law enforcement may also not have had probable cause to detain you while trying to talk with you. They may have profiled you or abused their power to get information, violating your Fourth Amendment rights.

It Was Self-Defense

If the misdemeanor charges are related to violence, a violent crimes attorney may be able to prove that it was self-defense. The person may have been trying to cause you bodily harm or take advantage of you, which is why you defended yourself. Your violent crimes attorney will have to prove that there was an appropriate level of force and that you had a reasonable fear of imminent harm.

Entrapment

A criminal defense lawyer in Colorado Springs may use an entrapment defense strategy to prove that you did not come up with the idea to commit the crime on your own. A person in law enforcement may have coerced or enticed you to commit a crime that you otherwise wouldn’t have committed.

Lesser Offense

If the evidence against you is substantial, your attorney may choose to try to get a lesser offense. To do this, your attorney would need to convince the jury that you are guilty of a lesser offense than a misdemeanor. This would include admitting a certain level of guilt in order to reduce the severity of the consequences.

An example of this is if the charges are related to a robbery. Your attorney may argue that you are guilty of theft, but you were simply an accomplice, not the mastermind.

Insanity

A misdemeanor defense strategy that is not as common is an insanity strategy. This is much more difficult to prove, but it may apply in situations where mental capacity is diminished. For instance, the defendant may have problems distinguishing right from wrong or may not understand the nature of their actions.

Hire an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney at the Law Offices of Clifton Black

Misdemeanor charges have the possibility of leading to life-altering consequences depending on the severity of the charges. To get reduced charges or less severe consequences, you need to hire a criminal defense lawyer who can represent you. They will help you navigate this process so that you have the best chance of having these charges reduced or cleared completely.

At The Law Offices of Clifton Black, our lawyers are passionate about providing legal representation and protecting the rights of our clients. For expert legal defense, contact us today at 719-328-1616 for a consultation with one of our criminal defense attorneys.

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Exceptional Experience & Results

For over 20 years we have represented clients in Colorado from a client-centered approach. We are experts within the areas of Cannabis Law, Criminal Defense, Family Law, and Business Law. We believe in protecting the rights of businesses and individuals with precision, exceeding client expectations with each case. Client satisfaction inspires us to strive for excellence in everything we do.

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