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CRS 18-3-206

Colorado Menacing

Colorado revised statute 18-3-206, known as menacing, is when someone threatens another person, using words or physical actions, thus putting the person in a place of extreme fear. In Colorado, menacing is a class 1 misdemeanor, but it is a Class 5 felony if the defendant uses a deadly weapon, or pretends to use a deadly weapon, to threaten someone.

Let’s face it. Life happens.

No one wants to get in trouble, but when it happens, what do you do?

If you have been arrested or charged with a crime, the best decision you can make is to
hire a good criminal defense attorney. With the right defense lawyer in your corner, you
will be advised and guided towards the best outcome for your case.

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Penalties for Menacing in Colorado

Charge Classification Penalty
Menacing Misdemeanor Class 1:

  • Up to 364 days in jail and/or
  • A fine of up to $1,000
Menacing Felony Class 5:

  • 1-3 years in prison and/or
  • A fine of $1,000–$100,000
(Colo. Rev. Stat. § § 18-3-206, 18-1.3-401, 18-1.3-406, 18-1.3-501.)

Here Is What The Prosecution Must Prove to Convict You

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The elements of the crime of false imprisonment are:

  1. That the defendant,
  2. in the State of Colorado, at or about the date and place charged,
  3. knowingly,
  4. by any threat or physical action,
  5. Placed or attempted to place another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury.
  6. If there is an affirmative defense raised, the prosecution must also prove that the defendant’s conduct was not legally authorized by the affirmative defense.

Possible Defenses for Menacing in Colorado

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The prosecutor must prove items, or elements, that show the defendant committed the crime of menacing. For example, they have to show that the defendant used a deadly weapon if they want to convict you of felony menacing. They also have to prove that they caused someone to be in fear of severe bodily harm. However, if you did not commit a physical act of violence, the prosecutor must show that your threats put the victim in reasonable fear that you might hurt them.

Criminal defense lawyers have several possible defenses for a felony or misdemeanor menacing charge, including:

It’s important to note that even if you threaten someone with a weapon but don’t have it on you, you can still be charged and convicted of menacing.

Colorado Revised Statutes. CRS 18-3-206:

18-3-206. Menacing:

(1) A person commits the crime of menacing if, by any threat or physical action, he or she knowingly places or attempts to place another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury. Menacing is a class 3 misdemeanor, but, it is a class 5 felony if committed:

(a) By the use of a deadly weapon or any article used or fashioned in a manner to cause a person to reasonably believe that the article is a deadly weapon; or

(b) By the person representing verbally or otherwise that he or she is armed with a deadly weapon.

Have you been charged or arrested for menacing in Colorado Springs or El Paso County?

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Many people don’t know that even if you intend no harm to the alleged victim with your threats, by placing someone in fear of being harmed, you could be convicted of menacing in Colorado. And this crime, whether it’s a misdemeanor or a felony, results in jail time and a criminal record if convicted. For the prosecutor to convict you, they have to convince the jury that you either caused the victim harm, were actively attempting to harm them, or put them in reasonable fear that you would harm them. The jury must believe that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Thankfully, there are many defenses for menacing, such as acting out of self dense or not using a weapon to threaten the person. Still, you need a reliable criminal defense attorney to create a stellar defense strategy to protect you.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Is stalking a form of menacing in Colorado?

In Colorado, stalking is a related offense to menacing. Stalking is when someone makes repeated threats that cause someone to be reasonably fearful. So if you are a repeat offender of menacing, you could also be charged with stalking, which is prosecuted as a felony.

Do I need a criminal defense lawyer if I plan on pleading guilty to menacing in Colorado?

Even if you plan on pleading guilty to menacing in Colorado, working with a criminal defense lawyer is advisable. An experienced attorney will create a defense strategy to reduce your charges using mitigating factors and other defenses.

Without a lawyer, you could receive higher charges. For example, you could be convicted of a felony, even if your actions only warrant a misdemeanor. In felony menacing cases, if you are found guilty of menacing, you could be taken to jail immediately unless you have a criminal defense attorney who can help guide you through your options.

Will I go to jail for menacing in Colorado?

If you are convicted of menacing in Colorado, you will face jail time. Both misdemeanor and felony convictions of menacing result in jail or prison time. For a misdemeanor, you will face up to 364 days in jail. However, for a felony conviction, you will go to prison for one to three years.

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