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Classification of Iowa Crimes

Helpful Information from Our Des Moines Criminal Defense Lawyer

Below, we have compiled information regarding how crimes are classified in Iowa. Read on to learn more and gain insight into the charge you are facing.

Class A Felony

A person who is guilty of this crime shall be sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole unless the governor commutes the sentence.

Class B Felony

A person who is guilty of this crime shall not be sentenced to longer than 25 years in prison. An habitual offender shall not be confined for longer than 15 years. Some class B felonies have 70% mandatory minimums (a.k.a "a quarter-seventy"). For example, if you are convicted of robbery in the first degree, you are required to serve 70% of the 25-year sentence, which is 17.5 years.

Other class B felonies under the 70% rule include:

  • Homicide by vehicle while intoxicated
  • Attempted murder
  • Kidnapping in the second degree
  • Sexual abuse in the second degree

Class C Felony

A person – who is not an habitual offender – guilty of this crime shall not be sentenced to more than 10 years in prison. In addition to the sentence, the person shall be assessed a fine of at least $1,000 but not more than $10,000 plus a 35% surcharge. Some class C felonies require that you serve at least 70% of the minimum sentence. One well-known crime that requires the 70% minimum is robbery in the second degree.

Class D Felony

A person – who is not an habitual offender – shall not be sentenced to more than five years in prison. In addition to the sentence, the person shall be assessed a fine of at least $750 but no more than $7,500 plus a 35% surcharge.

Aggravated Misdemeanor

A person who is guilty of this crime shall not be sentenced to more than two years. In addition to the sentence, the person shall be fined at least $625 but not more than $6,250 plus a 35% surcharge.

Serious Misdemeanor

A person who is guilty of this crime shall not be sentenced to more than one year. In addition to the sentence, the person shall be assessed a fine of at least $315 but not more than $1,875 plus a 35% surcharge.

Simple Misdemeanor

A person who is guilty of this crime shall not be sentenced to more than 30 days in jail. In addition to the sentence, the person can be fined at least $65 but not more than $625 plus a 35% surcharge.

It should be noted that the above crimes and penalties have exceptions. You should check the specific crime in the Iowa Code to determine the minimum and maximum punishment for each specific crime. The above information is correct for a vast majority of the crimes. One well-known crime that does not follow the above rules is the minor in possession of alcohol conviction. Although it is considered a simple misdemeanor, one must pay a minimum of a $250 fine plus court costs and surcharge.

Court Costs & Surcharge

Whether you have to pay a criminal or civil fine in Iowa, you will be assessed a surcharge of 35% to your fine. In a criminal case, you will also be assessed court costs of $60 for simple misdemeanor cases and $100 for serious misdemeanors, aggravated misdemeanors, and felonies.

If you have any questions regarding the charge classifications in Iowa, do not hesitate to contact the Feld Law Firm to schedule your free consultation. Our Des Moines criminal defense attorney would be happy to discuss why you or your loved one was charged the way they were charged. We can also inform you if you actually were charged wrong. Regardless, it does not hurt to call and speak with an attorney so that you can be pointed in the right direction.

Reach out to us at (515) 996-4441 to get started.

Why Feld Law Firm is the Right Choice?

  • Personalized Service
  • Honest and Straight Forward Guidance
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  • Hundreds of Cases Handled
  • Polk County Simple Misdemeanors Starting as low as $500
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Polk County Simple Misdemeanors Starting as low as $500

Call us today at 515-996-4441 for a free consultation. We will be happy to discuss your matter. 

Our Recent Case Results

If you are looking for a lawyer to defend you against criminal charges, you know that experience, reputation, and results matter. At Feld Law Firm, we have earned a reputation for effectively representing clients and successfully resolving their cases. Browse our recent case results for a clearer picture of the quality of our service.
  • Felony Burglary & Criminal Mischief Penalty Reduced
  • Possession of Controlled Substance Case Dismissed
  • Theft Not Guilty
  • OWI Case Dismissed
  • OWI Penalty Reduced
  • OWI Case Dismissed
  • Patient Abuse Not Guilty
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