A previous conviction can increase your sentencing time

On Behalf of | Aug 16, 2021 | Criminal Defense |

Being prosecuted on criminal charges can carry additional problems for defendants in Alabama when they are multiple offenders. Not only have state legislators enhanced the multiple offender DUI laws, but they have also enhanced the multiple offender sentencing requirements for those with higher class felony convictions. Those who have been convicted of a Class D felony notwithstanding, any other convicted felons will face much harsher penalties when being convicted on multiple occasions for similar class felonious acts.

Second upper-level felony convictions

The major criminal law classes of felony convictions in Alabama are A, B, and C classifications, with each one having a maximum and minimum incarceration term assigned. Penitentiary sentences increase with the higher class of felony, which also applies to first offenders. Multiple offenders with convictions in the same class will result in them being charged with one grade higher with respect to the amount of time they may receive according to the state sentencing guidelines.

Three or more felony convictions

Defendants who are facing similar class felonies and have been convicted twice in the same class or higher can expect an even higher sentencing request from the prosecutor for the court to consider. A third conviction will assuredly result in even more enhanced incarceration time, with criminal law sentencing guidelines set at a minimum of 15 years for a Class C, 20 years for a Class B, and life incarceration possible for a Class A conviction.

In addition to these prosecution upgrades for those with multiple felonies on their criminal record, being convicted of a Class D felony with either a Class A or B felony conviction established on their criminal history will have the Class D charge enhanced to the Class C level sentencing guidelines. These are indeed very serious increases in potential penitentiary terms for all felony defendants regardless of case details.