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FELONY SENTENCING - Borrelli Law Office


            Sentencing can be one of the most critical stages of a criminal case. If convicted, a judge usually has a range of sentencing options.  Either a range of years to be served in prison or even the choice of probation versus prison at all.  These things are decided at sentencing.  The judge must look at all mitigating factors (those that tend to show this particular crime or defendant is less serious) and aggravating factors (those that tend to make this particular crime or defendant more serious).  It is important that any and all mitigating factors in your case are presented so that the judge can give you the minimum amount under Arizona law for any criminal conviction.

            Mr. Borrelli is experienced at presenting mitigation on behalf of his clients.  Where necessary, mitigation specialists who are experts in various fields such as mental health and substance abuse can be used to make sure the judge understands the mitigating factors of the client.  Mr. Borrelli often requests mitigation hearings where witnesses can be brought in to testify about those aspects of a client’s life which would lead to mitigation.  As a criminal defense attorney, Mr. Borrelli is dedicating to doing whatever he can to minimize the impact of criminal charges on his clients’ lives.


Felonies are guided by Arizona’s mandatory sentencing guidelines as set forth in A.R.S 13-601, et seq. and A.R.S 13-701, et seq.  Generally, a first time offender is eligible for probation if convicted. (See Sex Crimes, Dangerous Crimes, and Homicide below for certain exceptions).  This means that a judge has a choice of punishment ranging from a range of years in prison to probation for a first time felony conviction.  Mr. Borrelli will do everything he can to ensure that any client convicted of a first time felony will receive probation with the least restrictive terms possible.

Felonies are classified by numbers ranging from Class 6 felonies (the least serious) to Class 2 felonies (the most severe) – with certain crimes such as homicides given their own classifications.  Any Class 6 felony may also be charged as a misdemeanor or designated (turned into) a misdemeanor by the Judge after a conviction.   Often times, a plea to a Class 6 “Open” (or Class 6 “Undesignated”) may be obtained for a first time offender.  Under these agreements, a person is placed on probation and can have the criminal offense designated a misdemeanor after successfully completing the probation term.

Probation is a suspension of sentence, where a judge can decide not to send a defendant to prison.  Rather, that person is sentenced to a term of probation and is given terms & rules that he or she must follow.  If the terms are violated, that probation can be revoked and sentenced to prison.  Terms of probation can include paying fines, surcharges and restitution to victims of a criminal offense as well as a term of imprisonment up to one year in the county jail.  Often probationers are required to attend various education and/or treatment classes (alcohol, drug, anger management, parenting etc.), perform random drug testing,