If you or a loved one has been charged with First Degree Arson or other Arson charges in Denver, Arapahoe, or Jefferson County or anywhere in Colorado, it is wise to consult a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney immediately to look at your case. Many people are charged with this offense after an accident. For example, we have represented teens who were charged after starting a small fire that got out of control, or an elderly person who accidentally started a fire in the kitchen. Often, the District Attorney overcharges people with this offense, ignoring the lack of intent involved in the accident. Because of this, it is important that you have the insight and expertise of a criminal defense attorney on your side.
What is First Degree Arson?
First Degree Arson is charged whenever a person knowingly sets fire to, causes to be burned, or damages or destroys using an explosive device, any building or occupied structure.
What is the Sentence for First Degree Arson?
Possible Prison Time
First Degree Arson is a class 3 felony, which carries a possible prison sentence of up to 12 years.
As a class 3 felony, a First Degree Arson conviction carries a possible fine of up to $750,000.
Sentenced as a Violent Crime When an Explosive is Used
There is a caveat in the statute. When an explosive device is used, a harsher sentence is enforced. While still a class 3 felony, a person convicted of 1st Degree Arson for using an explosive will be sentenced pursuant to the mandatory sentence for violent crimes. This is found under Colorado statute 18-1.3-106, and means they could face between 8 and 24 years in prison with 5 years of parole.
An aggressive criminal defense attorney fighting on your behalf is invaluable.
Defense for First Degree Arson Charges in Denver
The District Attorney has the burden of proof in criminal cases in Adams, Douglas, or El Paso County, and this includes First Degree Arson charges. They must prove that you knowingly set fire to or caused a building to be damaged by fire. The criminal defense attorneys at O'Malley and Sawyer have a thorough understanding of criminal law, and we know when the DA isn't meeting this standard. We fight hard to highlight the flaws in the District Attorney's case in order to illustrate that you are being wrongly charged. The involvement of one of our hard-hitting defense attorneys aggressively fighting for you in the courtroom often results in charges being dropped or sentences being greatly reduced.
Charged with 1st Degree Arson? Why You Need a Defense Attorney
Put our 40 years of experience to work for you
If you have been charged with First Degree Arson, you need to contact an aggressive criminal defense attorney who can face the District Attorney in the courtroom. The government will be fighting hard for a conviction – you need an advocate who will fight on your behalf. The lawyers at O'Malley and Sawyer have decades of combined experience we will put to work in the courtroom for you. If you've been contacted by the police regarding Arson charges, don't hesitate to contact us for a free consultation to begin planning your defense.
Learn more about other degrees of Arson in Colorado:
- Second Degree Arson – C.R.S. 18-4-103
- Third Degree Arson – C.R.S. 18-4-104
- Fourth Degree Arson – C.R.S. 18-4-105
Colorado First Degree Arson Statute – C.R.S. 18-4-102
“(1) A person who knowingly sets fire to, burns, causes to be burned, or by the use of any explosive damages or destroys, or causes to be damaged or destroyed, any building or occupied structure of another without his consent commits first degree arson.
(2) First degree arson is a class 3 felony.
(3) A defendant convicted of committing first degree arson by the use of any explosive shall be sentenced by the court in accordance with the provisions of section 18-1.3-406.”