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Colorado Law: Criteria for Receiving Probation

Denver, Colorado Criminal Defense Lawyer H. Michael Steinberg

18‑1.3‑203. Criteria for granting probation.

  (1) The court, subject to the provisions of this title and title 16, C.R.S., in its discretion may grant probation to a defendant unless, having regard to the nature and circumstances of the offense and to the history and character of the defendant, it is satisfied that imprisonment is the more appropriate sentence for the protection of the public because:

 (a) There is undue risk that during a period of probation the defendant will commit another crime; or
 (b) The defendant is in need of correctional treatment that can most effectively be provided by a sentence to imprisonment as authorized by section 18‑1.3‑104; or
 (c) A sentence to probation will unduly depreciate the seriousness of the defendant’s crime or undermine respect for law; or
 (d) His or her past criminal record indicates that probation would fail to accomplish its intended purposes; or
 (e) The crime, the facts surrounding it, or the defendant’s history and character when considered in relation to statewide sentencing practices relating to persons in circumstances substantially similar to those of the defendant do not justify the granting of probation.
 (2) The following factors, or the converse thereof where appropriate, while not controlling the discretion of the court, shall be accorded weight in making determinations called for by subsection (1) of this section:
 (a) The defendant’s criminal conduct neither caused nor threatened serious harm to another person or his or her property;
 (b) The defendant did not plan or expect that his or her criminal conduct would cause or threaten serious harm to another person or his or her property;
 (c) The defendant acted under strong provocation;
 (d) There were substantial grounds which, though insufficient to establish a legal defense, tend to excuse or justify the defendant’s conduct;
 (e) The victim of the defendant’s conduct induced or facilitated its commission;
 (f) The defendant has made or will make restitution or reparation to the victim of his or her conduct for the damage or injury which was sustained;
 (g) The defendant has no history of prior criminal activity or has led a law‑abiding life for a substantial period of time before the commission of the present offense;
 (h) The defendant’s conduct was the result of circumstances unlikely to recur;
 (i) The character, history, and attitudes of the defendant indicate that he or she is unlikely to commit another crime;
 (j) The defendant is particularly likely to respond affirmatively to probationary treatment;
 (k) The imprisonment of the defendant would entail undue hardship to himself or herself or his or her dependents;
 (l) The defendant is elderly or in poor health;
 (m) The defendant did not abuse a public position of responsibility or trust;
 (n) The defendant cooperated with law enforcement authorities by bringing other offenders to justice, or otherwise.
 (3) Nothing in this section shall be deemed to require explicit reference to these factors in a presentence report or by the court at sentencing.

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H. Michael Steinberg Esq.
Attorney and Counselor at Law
The Colorado Criminal Defense Law Firm of H. Michael Steinberg
A Denver, Colorado Lawyer Focused Exclusively On
Colorado Criminal Law For Over 30 Years.
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