Assault Laws and Penalties in Colorado


Assault is a serious crime, one that can lead to long-term punishment by anyone convicted of it. Understanding assault laws and penalties in Colorado can help you to know what to expect if you have been accused or charged with these crimes. However, our Colorado assault attorneys at The Harrell Law Firm, PLLC, encourage you not to wait to get the legal support you need in this situation.

What Are the Colorado Assault Laws and Penalties?

There are numerous laws in Colorado books that relate to various elements of assault. The following are some of the most important for you to know.

Bodily Injury and Deadly Weapons

At the heart of assault is the infliction of bodily injury on another person using deadly weapons. Under the state’s laws, Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-1-901, this applies to any instance in which physical pain or some type of impairment of either mental or physical condition is made, even if it is slight. The presence of a daily weapon typically means a loaded or unloaded weapon of some type. This could include knives and guns but may also be related to bats, clubs, cleaning chemicals, and even steel-toed boots.

Penalties in Assault Cases

The Colorado legal system recognizes three levels of assault cases with the following potential penalties associated with them:

1st Degree

The most serious, this is a felony often indicating that a person caused serious bodily injury to another party intentionally using strangulation or a deadly weapon, intended to seriously disfigure or disable the victim, or by engaging in some type of action that shows an extreme indifference to human life. This typically results in punishments of up to 10 to 32 years in prison. There are some differences related to the classification.

2nd Degree

Second-degree charges typically relate to situations where another bodily injury crime occurs with a deadly weapon or strangulation. It can also apply to intoxicating or drugging another person, or directing unlawful actions at police or other law enforcement or emergency medical providers. The punishment here is as much as 5 to 16 years in prison.

3rd Degree

A third-degree charge is typically a misdemeanor. This can occur by knowingly or recklessly causing harm to another person in any way, negligently causing harm to another person using a deadly weapon, or harassing a police officer or medical provider. The punishments here are up to 364 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Domestic Violence Enhancements

There are also various enhancements possible based on the individual circumstances of any case, especially if you are charged in a domestic violence case. If the victim of your assault case is your current or former spouse or a partner, you can face a domestic violence sentencing enhancement. The judge will likely issue a protective order for the victim and if you are convicted, you might be required to undergo treatment for domestic violence.

Talk to a criminal defense attorney at The Harrell Law Firm, PLLC, with a free consultation if you are facing assault charges.