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Colorado Springs Serious Bodily Injury Lawyer

Dedicated Advocacy for Criminal Cases Involving Severe Injuries
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In Colorado, proving that a victim suffered “serious bodily injury” can have major implications for criminal charges and sentencing.

The presence or absence of such injury can significantly impact the outcome of a case, influencing the level of charges, potential penalties, and strategies for defense.

Understanding this complex issue is crucial for anyone involved in a criminal case in Colorado, particularly those facing charges where serious bodily injury is a key factor. It is essential to consult with a Colorado criminal defense lawyer to navigate this challenging legal terrain.

An experienced Colorado Springs serious bodily injury lawyer can argue against allegations of serious bodily injury and help secure the most favorable outcome.

Background on Serious Bodily Injury in Colorado Criminal Code

According to the Colorado Revised Statutes Title 18, Section 18-1-901(3)(p), serious bodily injury is defined as “bodily injury which, either at the time of the actual injury or at a later time, involves a substantial risk of death, a substantial risk of serious permanent disfigurement, a substantial risk of protracted loss or impairment of the function of any part or organ of the body, or breaks, fractures, or burns of the second or third degree.”

Essentially, an injury that could result in death, permanent disability, disfigurement, or the extended loss of normal body function meets the definition. The risk of these outcomes can be present at the time of injury or develop later on.

Difference Between Bodily Injury and Serious Bodily Injury?

In Colorado criminal law, there is an important legal distinction between bodily injury and serious bodily injury charges.

Bodily injury refers to physical pain, illness, or any impairment of physical or mental condition, per C.R.S. § 18-1-901(3)(c). Bodily injury encompasses even minor injuries like bruises, scratches, and cuts.

Serious bodily injury involves a significant risk of death or permanent, disabling harm like loss of limbs, organs, eyesight, etc. The injuries are grave and long-lasting.

The distinction is important because crimes involving serious bodily injury are much more serious felonies with harsher penalties. Prosecutors face a higher burden of proof to show the injuries meet the “serious” designation.

A Colorado Springs criminal defense lawyer can argue that the injuries do not rise to the level of serious bodily harm, potentially leading to reduced charges. Retaining legal counsel immediately to start building a defense is critical.

Serious Bodily Injury Crimes in Colorado Springs

In Colorado, intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causing serious bodily injury to another person may lead to first or second-degree assault charges, depending on the circumstances.

Assault in the First Degree

First-degree assault is classified as a Class 3 felony in Colorado. Under C.R.S. § 18-3-202, a person commits assault in the first degree if they:

  • Have the intention to inflict severe bodily injury and actually cause such injury to another person by employing a deadly weapon.


  • Inflict serious bodily injury upon another individual under particular circumstances, including:
  • Through ambush or extreme indifference to human life, the person knowingly engaged in conduct that created a grave risk of death.
  • The victim was a firefighter, peace officer, or medical first responder, and the assault occurred while they were performing their official duties.

First-degree assault convictions can result in 8 to 24 years in prison.

Assault in the Second Degree

Second-degree assault is classified as a Class 4 felony. As outlined in C.R.S. § 18-3-203, a person commits this offense if they:

  • Deliberately cause serious bodily injury to another person (without the use of a deadly weapon).


  • Recklessly cause serious bodily injury through the use of a deadly weapon.
  • Knowingly inflict serious bodily injury on a sudden heat of passion caused by provocation.

Penalties for second-degree assault range from 2 to 6 years in prison.
Other charges like vehicular assault, assault of the elderly or disabled, and child abuse also involve causing serious bodily injury.

How Prosecutors Use Serious Bodily Injury as a Sentencing Enhancement

Given the broad range of injuries that potentially qualify as “serious bodily injury,” prosecutors often use this enhancement to secure plea deals or longer prison sentences after conviction.

Some examples of how they leverage this include:

  • Overcharging assault cases as second or first-degree felonies based on serious bodily injury in order to compel plea bargain deals.
  • Pointing to serious bodily injury factors at sentencing to argue for lengthier prison terms.
  • Using serious bodily injury to trigger “extraordinary risk” sentencing categories that boost prison time.

So, this sentencing enhancement gives prosecutors a great deal of leverage in pursuing charges and punishments for violent crimes. Even injuries that may seem questionable in terms of meeting the “serious bodily injury” definition get used to maximize penalties.

Possible Defenses to Serious Bodily Injury Charges

In serious bodily injury cases, the defense will thoroughly examine the facts to determine if any defenses apply that could lead to reduced or dismissed charges.

Possible defenses include:

  • Self-defense – the defendant was protecting themselves from imminent harm.
  • Misidentification – the defendant is not the person who caused the injury.
  • False allegations – no serious injury occurred.
  • Lack of intent – the injury was accidental and unintended

An experienced Colorado Springs criminal defense attorney will know how to argue these defenses persuasively on your behalf.

Protect Your Rights with a Serious Bodily Injury Lawyer in Colorado

Allegations of serious bodily injury must be taken seriously, as convictions can completely devastate your future. Do not wait to seek help from an attorney who understands Colorado law and how to build a strong defense in injury cases.

At Right Law Group in Colorado Springs, our attorneys have successfully defended clients facing assault and injury charges for years. We are known for our aggressive defense, stellar reputation with prosecutors and judges, and tireless commitment to our clients.

To discuss your serious bodily injury case with our legal team, contact Right Law Group for a free consultation.

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