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CHAPTER 6: SELECTED CRIMINAL OFFENSES - Table of Contents

6.1 - Overview6.2 - Inchoate Offenses6.3 - Homicide6.4 - Assault6.5 - Domestic Violence6.6 - Other Unlawful Offenses against the person6.7 - Unlawful Sexual Behavior6.8 - Offenses against Property6.9 - Tresspass, Tampering and Mischief6.10 - Offenses involving Fraud6.11 - Offenses involving Family Relations6.12 - Offenses relating to Morals6.13 - Offenses against Government Operations and Public Order6.14 - Offenses relating to Weapons6.15 - Offenses relating to Controlled Substances6.16 - Alcohol/Drug related Traffic Incidents6.17 - Crimes Against Vulnerable Victims6.18 - Computer Crimes6.19 - Identity Theft

6.8 OFFENSES AGAINST PROPERTY

Crimes that have been designated as offenses against property include arson, burglary, robbery, theft, trespass, criminal mischief, and other offenses. These offenses are set out in Article 4 of Title 18.

Part 1 of Article 4 divides arson into four crimes, divided on the basis of the property that is damaged and/or the purpose of the act. First degree arson, C.R.S. § 18-4-102 occurs when a person knowingly sets fire to or destroys through any explosive damage any building or occupied structure of another without consent. First degree arson is a class 3 felony. Second degree arson, C.R.S. § 18-4-103, occurs when a person knowingly sets fire to or destroys through any explosive damage any property other than a building or occupied structure of another without consent. Second degree arson is a class 4 felony if the damage is $100 or more, and a class 2 misdemeanor if the damage is less than $100. Third degree arson, C.R.S. § 18-4-104 occurs when a person intentionally damages any property through fire or explosion with the intent to defraud. Third degree arson is a class 4 felony. Fourth degree arson, C.R.S. § 18-4-105 occurs when a person recklessly starts a fire or explosion that places another person in danger of death or serious bodily injury or places a building or occupied structure in danger of damage. Fourth degree arson is a class 4 felony if a person is endangered, a class 2 misdemeanor if property worth $100 or more is endangered, and a class 3 misdemeanor if property worth less than $100 is endangered.

Burglary is divided into three crimes in Part 2 of Article 4, depending on the place burglarized. First degree burglary, C.R.S. § 18-4-202, occurs when a person enters unlawfully, or remains unlawfully after a legal or illegal entry, in a building or occupied structure with the intent to commit a crime and assaults or menaces anyone, or is armed with a deadly weapon. First degree burglary is a class 3 felony. If the place that is burglarized is a pharmacy, or the object of the burglary is controlled substances, the crime is burglary of controlled substances and is a class 2 felony. Second degree burglary, C.R.S. § 18-4-203, occurs when a person breaks an entrance into, or enters unlawfully, or remains unlawfully after a legal or illegal entry, in a building or occupied structure with the intent to commit a crime. Second degree burglary is thus distinguished from first degree burglary by the absence of any assault or deadly weapon. Second degree burglary is a class 4 felony, unless the place burglarized is a dwelling or the object of the burglary is controlled substances, in which case the burglary is a class 3 felony. Third degree burglary, C.R.S. § 18-4-204, occurs when a person enters or breaks into any vault, safe, vending machine coin box or other apparatus. Third degree burglary is a class 5 felony, unless the object of the burglary is controlled substances, in which case it is a class 4 felony.

It is also illegal, and punishable as a class 5 felony under C.R.S. § 18-4-205, to commit the crime of possession of burglary tools. Finally, one who is determined to be an habitual burglar, pursuant to C.R.S. § 18-4-201.1 due to two or more convictions of first or second degree burglary (or similar laws in other states) faces a much more serious sentence. An habitual burglar must be sentenced to more than the maximum presumptive sentence but not more than twice the maximum presumptive sentence, and is not eligible for probation or suspension of sentence.

Robbery crimes are set forth in Part 3 of Article 4. Robbery, C.R.S. § 18-4-301, generally involves the taking of property directly from another person. Robbery is defined as taking anything of value from the person or presence of another by the use of force, threats or intimidation. Robbery is a class 4 felony. However, robbery is a class 3 felony when committed against an at-risk victim. C.R.S. ¤ 18-6.5-103(4). Aggravated robbery, C.R.S. § 18-4-302, occurs when a person commits a robbery as just defined and, either during the robbery or the immediate flight from the robbery, the defendant a) is armed with a deadly weapon and the defendant intends to harm anyone if resisted, b) wounds or strikes the victim with a deadly weapon, or puts the victim in fear of death or bodily injury with a deadly weapon, c) has a confederate who is armed with a deadly weapon and is aiding or abetting the defendant, or d) he possesses a simulated deadly weapon in fashion that would lead a reasonable person to believe it is an actual deadly weapon. Aggravated robbery is a class 3 felony and a crime of violence. Aggravated robbery of controlled substances is a class 2 felony.

Theft crimes are divided in seriousness by the amount of property taken. C.R.S. § 18-4-401 sets forth the elements. Theft occurs when a person "knowingly obtains or exercises control over anything of value of another without authorization, or by threat or deception" and a) intends to permanently deprive the owner of the thing of value, b) uses or abandons the thing of value in a manner that deprives the owner of the use or benefit of the thing of value, c) uses or abandons the thing of value intending to deprive the owner of the use or benefit of the thing of value, or d) demands any consideration for the return of the thing of value to the owner. Theft is a class 3 felony if the value of the thing of value is $20,000 or more, a class 4 felony if the value is $1,000 to $20,000, a class 1 misdemeanor if the value is $500 to $1,000, and a class 2 misdemeanor if the value is less than $500. However, C.R.S. ¤ 18-6.5-103(5) provides that if the theft is committed in the presence of an at-risk victim, or if the theft is committed against an at-risk victim while acting in a position of trust, whether or not the victim is present, then that theft is a class 5 felony if the value is less than $500 or a class 3 felony if the value is $500 or more. The statute also provides that two or more thefts within six months can be aggregated to reach the value limits just described. Finally, the statute also provides that theft from a person (by means other than the use of force, which presumably would be prosecuted as a robbery) is a class 5 felony regardless of the value of the property. C.R.S. ¤ 18-6.5-103(5) also provides that theft from the person of an at-risk victim by means other than the use of force is a class 4 felony.

Theft by receiving, C.R.S. § 18-4-410 occurs when a person receives, retains, loans money by pawn, or disposes of anything of value of another, knowing or believing that the thing of value is stolen, and intending to deprive the lawful owner of the use or benefit of the thing of value. Theft by receiving is punishable in the same manner as described above for theft. In addition, the statute provides that when a person is involved in the business of buying or selling goods for profit, that person is guilty of a class 3 felony if the aggregate value of the goods involved is $500 or more.

Aggravated motor vehicle theft is defined in C.R.S. § 18-4-409 as knowingly obtaining or exercising control over the motor vehicle of another person without authorization or by threat or deception, and a) retaining possession or control over the vehicle for more than twenty-four hours, b) attempts to alter or disguise, or does alter or disguise, the appearance of the vehicle, c) attempts to alter, or does alter, the vehicle identification number, d) uses the vehicle in the commission of a crime other than a traffic offense, e) causes property damage of $500 or more in the exercise of the vehicle, f) causes injury to another person while in control of the vehicle, g) removes the vehicle from the state for more than twelve hours, or h) puts false plates on the vehicle. Aggravated motor vehicle theft is a class 4 felony if the vehicle is worth $15,000 or less, and a class 3 felony if the vehicle is worth more than $15,000 or if the defendant has two or more previous convictions for motor vehicle theft. Aggravated motor vehicle theft in the second degree occurs when a person obtains or exercises control over the motor vehicle of another person and none of the additional factors listed above for aggravated motor vehicle theft exists. This crime is a class 5 felony if the vehicle is worth $15,000 or more, a class 6 felony if the vehicle is worth more than $500 to $15,000 and a class 2 misdemeanor if the vehicle is worth less than $500.

Various specific types of theft are addressed by other sections. C.R.S. § 18-4-402, outlaws theft of rental property. Theft of rental property occurs when a person who has obtained the temporary use of the property of another either fails to reveal the whereabouts of the property or fails to return the property within 72 hours of the agreed return date. The classification of theft of rental property mirrors the classification of the general theft statute set forth in the preceding paragraph. C.R.S. § 18-4-408 outlaws theft of trade secrets. Theft of trade secrets occurs when a person steals, or discloses to an unauthorized party, or improperly copies, a trade secret. The person is guilty of this crime when the person acts with the intent to deprive the owner of control of the trade secret, or the intent to appropriate the trade secret to his own use or the use of another. Theft of a trade secret is a class 1 misdemeanor. C.R.S. § 18-4-412 addresses the theft of medical records. C.R.S. § 18-4-426 addresses the theft of a lift ticket.

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