Many people are under the impression that they cannot face legal consequences for a failed attempt to commit a crime. However, this is not the case in the state of Colorado. Here’s what you should know about criminal attempt:

What is Criminal Attempt in Colorado?

Anyone who attempts—but fails—to commit a crime can face criminal charges. A defendant can be accused of criminal attempt when he engages in conduct that constitutes a “substantial step” towards committing a crime.

For example, let’s say a woman goes into a clothing store and stuffs clothing items into her purse. Before exiting the store, she is stopped by a security guard who watched her put the items in her purse. Since she has not left the store, she has not committed theft yet. However, she did take a substantial step towards committing this crime since she was concealing items in her handbag. Therefore, she could be charged with attempted theft.

The Consequences For Criminal Attempt

The consequences for criminal attempt will vary depending on the type of crime that the defendant was attempting to commit. In general, a defendant who is accused of criminal attempt will face criminal charges that are one step below the charges that would have been filed if he had successfully completed the crime.

For instance, someone who actually commits the crime of kidnapping in the first degree will be charged with a class 2 felony. However, if someone attempts and fails to commit kidnapping in the first degree, he will be charged with a class 3 felony instead. This is because a class 3 felony is one step below a class 2 felony, so it carries somewhat lighter penalties.

There are several exceptions to this rule. First, someone who is accused of attempting to commit a petty offense will face the same penalties as someone who is accused of actually committing a petty offense. Another exception to the “one step below” rule involves class 6 felony crimes. Defendants who attempt to commit class 6 felonies will face class 6 felony charges as opposed to a lighter criminal charge.

Have you been accused of attempting to commit a crime? If so, seek legal representation from the criminal defense attorneys at Reisch Law Firm right away. The law takes an attempt to commit a crime very seriously, so you will need an experienced criminal defense attorney to fight for your freedom. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.