In Arizona, felony conviction are separated into six classes. A class one felony is the most serious class of felony and a class six felony is the least serious. Each class of felony has a sentence range that a court must follow when they are sentencing a person convicted of a crime. This concept is often referred to as mandatory minimums. The range of sentences consist of mitigated, minimum, presumptive, maximum and aggravated terms of imprisonment.
Classes Of Felonies In Arizona
A class one felony is assigned to first and second degree murder in Arizona. First degree murder is punishable by life imprisonment or the death penalty. Second degree murder is punishable by ten to twenty-five years in prison.
A class two felony can result in a term of imprisonment from three to twelve years, with a presumptive term of five years.
A class three felony can result in a term of imprisonment from two years to eight years, with a presumptive sentence of three and a half years.
A class four felony can result in a term of imprisonment from one year to three years and nine months, with a presumptive term of two and a half years.
A class five felony can result in a term of imprisonment of six months to two and a half years, with a presumptive sentence of one and a half years.
A class six felony can result in a term of imprisonment of four months to two years, with a presumptive sentence of one year. Class six felonies are not always designated a felony at the time of conviction. Sometimes the judge will see it fit to not designated a class six felony a felony conviction. This means that it is not set in stone whether the conviction will be designated a class six felony, or to a class one misdemeanor. This is an incentive by the court to urge the person convicted to complete all of the terms of their sentence and remain a law-abiding citizen.
Class Six Undesignated Felony
A class six felony is the only class of felony that can be undesignated. If a person who is convicted of an undesignated class six felony complies with the terms of their sentence and remains a law-abiding citizen, they can petition the court to designate the conviction to a misdemeanor. It is important to remember that while a class six felony is undesignated, it is treated as though it is a felony conviction for purposes of the law. This means your rights are stripped just as they would be with any felony conviction until otherwise designated. There are blog posts on this page regarding what civil rights are taken away upon a felony conviction and how to restore those rights.
Felony convictions are serious in Arizona. The range of imprisonment a person with a felony charge is facing depends on the amount, age and seriousness of any prior felony convictions that person has on their record. Given that Arizona does not allow for expungement (with very narrow exceptions) a felony conviction has life lasting implications.
If you are facing a felony conviction or have a felony record and have questions about your specific situation, you can contact me at our office (480) 498-8998 or through the Contact Me page on this site.