If you face a felony conviction in Missouri, you may wonder what the specific sentence will mean. A judge may have mentioned a class of felony during your hearing. But what sentencing can you face for each felony level?
Missouri has five different felony classes. The law bases these classes on the severity of the charges. The worse the charge, the harsher the penalties for a felony conviction. Below are the differences between each level of felony.
The lowest felony you can receive is a Class E. This level is for more non-violent crimes. Since it is the least serious charge, a court can only give you a maximum sentence of four years in jail. And since there is no minimum jail time required, you may even be able to get probation or parole.
Class D is the second-lowest felony. The law reserves this level for more serious non-violent and low-level violent crimes. This also doesn’t have a minimum prison sentence. But someone convicted of a Class D felony can receive up to seven years in prison.
Class C felonies are next. These can include violent crimes and, as such, have a minimum prison term of three years. But a court can order a person up to ten years in prison for a Class C.
Class B is the second-highest level of a felony. Charges under this level are even more serious and can bring up to 15 years in jail. At a minimum, people charged with a Class B will receive a five-year prison sentence.
Class A is reserved for the most serious crimes. People charged with murder and severe violent crimes can face a life sentence under this felony level. And even the minimum sentence can mean being away from your family for 10 years.
A felony conviction can have stiff consequences
As you go through the process of hearings and a trial, the judge and your attorney will explain what your charges mean for your sentencing. But if you have any felony charges, you may spend time in jail and pay extremely high fines. And a criminal record can follow you long after you complete your sentence.
If you or your attorney can reduce your sentence, you may avoid the consequences of a felony conviction.