What To Expect in Criminal Court in Denver, Colorado
We Guide You Through the Colorado Court Process
Whether you have been arrested or charged for a crime, there is often uncertainty of what happens next or what to expect. At the law office of Philip M. Smith, Attorney at Law, I use my almost 30 years of legal experience, 16 years as a district attorney, to help clients understand the criminal court process and what they can expect based on the charges against them.
Philip M. Smith • Attorney • Denver, Colorado
What to Expect in a Colorado Criminal Court
Free Consultations • Call (303) 333-8900 • Email
For a skilled criminal defense lawyer on your side, contact my Denver criminal law office today. I handle cases involving felony, misdemeanor, and municipal ordinance violations. The following is a summary of what you can expect at each level:
Colorado Municipal Ordinance Violations
- Plea bargaining: You can initiate plea bargaining with the city attorney at the initial appearance without the assistance of a lawyer
- Investigation: Violations are often not thoroughly investigated by the police; however, a police report is not available until a not guilty plea is entered
- Trial: Trial should be held within 90 days of a not-guilty plea
- Time: Typically charges can be resolved in 2-3 months
- Sentence: If convicted, generally the individual will face a fine of up to $1000. However, jail time of up to 1 year is possible
Misdemeanors in Colorado
- Plea bargaining: After being arrested or summoned and advised of your rights, you will meet with the district attorney to discuss plea bargaining, it is important to have a lawyer at this stage.
- Trial: Trial should be held within 6 months of a not guilty plea.
- Sentence: There are 3 classes of misdemeanors and 2 classes of petty offenses. For conviction of a class 1 misdemeanor, the maximum penalty is 2 years in jail and a $5,000 fine.
Felonies in Colorado
- Arrest: An arrest must be the result of probable cause, either through a valid search warrant or other means. Less serious felony cases can be initiated by service of a summons, sometimes by mail. Do not ignore a summons. An arrest warrant will follow if you do not go to court
- Plea bargaining: Plea bargaining can begin at any stage within the process
- Court: There are many court appearances, including your first appearance in the County Court, advisement of your rights, appearance of your counsel, preliminary hearing, mandatory disposition conference, and appearance in district court
- Trial: Felony charges must be resolved or set for trial within 6 months of a not-guilty plea
- Sentence: Sentences will vary depending on severity of the crime, prior convictions, and other factors
Contact My Law Office
If you need a Denver Colorado area Criminal Attorney to discuss your Colorado Criminal Court Case or if you have questions about an outstanding criminal case, I encourage you to contact me, Criminal Defense Lawyer, Philip M. Smith, 303-333-8900 today for a free and confidential initial consultation.