In Colorado, there are two classes of Petty Offenses. A Class 1 Petty Offense carries a possible penalty of six months in jail and a fine of five hundred dollars. A Class 2 Petty Offense is punishable by a fine only. The fine amount for a Class 2 Petty Offense is stated within the statute of the offense charged. In Colorado, a person may be arrested by a law enforcement officer when a crime occurs in the officer’s presence. This includes both Class 1 and Class 2 Petty Offenses. Although a person may construe a “petty offense” as something trivial, this error in evaluating the case can lead to a permanent criminal record that is easily accessible by potential employers, schools, licensing agencies, and the general public. Thus, it is never advisable to simply plead guilty to a Petty Offense, or any criminal offense, without considering all of the collateral consequences associated with the case. An experienced criminal lawyer may be able to get the case dismissed or achieve a resolution that will not result in a conviction. If the case does not result in a conviction, it may be eligible for a record seal.
It’s also important to note that there are many special rules and procedures for Petty Offenses. One of such rules indicates that a child under eighteen years of age is not entitled to a jury trial for a violation of a municipal ordinance or county ordinance for which imprisonment is not a possibility. An adult who wants a jury trial for her Petty Offense has to make a request in writing to the court within twenty-one days after entry of a plea of not guilty and pay a jury fee of twenty-five dollars. If she wants six jurors, rather than the minimum three, she must indicate this in her request.
If you or a loved one has been charged with a Petty Offense, contact Attorney Monte Robbins today for a free case evaluation at 303-355-5148 or 970-301-5541.