Kidnapping is viewed by our judicial system as an extremely serious crime. This is especially true if an individual is charged with kidnapping a child. With the crime being considered so serious, the prosecution often feels pressure to get a conviction along with the maximum penalties.
If you have been charged with kidnapping, it is vital that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who can provide you with adequate legal representation. The penalties associated with a kidnapping conviction are steep, and an assault defense attorney may be able to help you avoid them.Maricopa County Kidnapping Defense Attorney
If you are facing kidnapping charges in and around Maricopa County, including the cities of Mesa, Phoenix, East Valley, Tempe, Gilbert, Chandler, or Scottsdale, contact the Law Office of James E. Novak. As a qualified criminal defense attorney, James Novak will work tirelessly to obtain the facts of the case and will do everything in his power to get your charges dismissed or reduced.
Call the Law Office of James E. Novak today at (480) 413-1499 to discuss your accusations with a dedicated Tempe kidnapping defense lawyer. Your initial consultation is free, and it is the first step you can take in arming yourself to defend these charges.
Kidnapping in Arizona
According to Arizona Revised Statute § 13-1304, an individual can be found guilty of kidnapping if he or she intentionally holds a person against his or her will for the purpose of:
- Receiving a ransom
- Taking control of a vehicle
- Using the person as a hostage or shield
- Committing a sexual offense
- Causing injury or death to the person
- Having the victim assist him or her in the commission of a felony
In order for an individual to be convicted of kidnapping in Maricopa County, the prosecution must be able to prove that the defendant intentionally restrained the victim, and intended on putting the victim in imminent physical harm.
Penalties for Kidnapping in Arizona
Kidnapping can be classified as a class two, three or four felony. In order to be charged with a fourth degree felony for kidnapping, the defendant would have had to voluntarily release the alleged victim to a safe place, without subjecting him or her to physical harm, sexual acts, ransom demands, or any other specified offenses.
To be charged with a class three felony kidnapping charge, the defendant must not have inflicted any harm on the alleged victim, and negotiated the terms of the victims release with law enforcement before releasing the victim.
An individual can be charged with a class two felony if he or she did not voluntarily release the victim, inflicted injuries to the victim, committed a sexual crime against the victim, used the victim for assistance in committing a felony offense, or committed other specified offenses listed in Arizona Revised Statue § 13-1304.
In Arizona, when an individual is convicted of felony kidnapping he or she is usually given what is known as a presumptive sentence, which is a predetermined amount of years of imprisonment. However, the sentence can be either increased or decreased depending on the circumstances of the case.
If the alleged offender used a deadly weapon during the commission of the offense, his or her sentence can be enhanced due to “aggravating” factors. The sentence can also be reduced due to “mitigating” factors, such as the defendant’s age, mental capacity, or degree of actual participation in the commission of the offense.
The prison sentences associated with kidnapping charges for first time offenders in Arizona are as follows:
|Felony (class)||Min. (yrs.)||Max. (yrs.)||Presumptive (yrs.)||Mitigated (yrs.)||Aggravated (yrs.)|
If the victim was 15 years of age or younger at the time of the kidnappings, the defendant can automatically be charged with a class two felony, and in this case, is punishable by a life sentence in prison.
Law Office of James E. Novak, PLLC | Tempe Kidnapping Defense Lawyer
Being arrested for kidnapping can be a jolting experience. If you know how seriously the judicial system takes kidnapping, you are aware of the potential long term prison sentences you may be facing. If you have been charged with kidnapping in and around Maricopa County, including the areas of Tempe, Mesa, Phoenix, East Valley, Scottsdale, or Gilbert, contact the Law Office of James. E. Novak. James Novak is a dedicated defense attorney who will guide you through the legal process, may be able to use mitigating factors to help you avoid the most serious penalties associated with your charges.
If you are facing kidnapping charges, it is imperative that you seek legal counsel immediately. Call the Law Office of James E. Novak at (480) 413-1499 today to set up your free consultation.