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2018 Arizona Criminal Sentencing Guidelines

Non-Dangerous Felonies, First Offense

23 years4 years5 years10 years12.5 years
32 years2.5 years3.5 years7 years8.75 years
41 year1.5 years2.5 years3 years3.75 years
5.5 years.75 years1.5 years2 years2.5 years
6.33 years.5 years1 year1.5 years2 years

Repeat convictions for non-dangerous felony offenses break into three categories, each of which indicates the number of previous offenses. So, category one indicates one previous conviction, category two is for two previous convictions, and category three for three.

Non-Dangerous Felonies, Second Offense (Category One)

23 years4 years5 years10 years12.5 years
32 years2.5 years3.5 years7 years8.75 years
41 year1.5 years2.5 years3 years3.75 years
5.5 years.75 years1.5 years2 years2.5 years
6.25 years.5 years1 year1.5 years2 years

Non-Dangerous Felonies, Third Offense (Category Two)

24.5 years6 years9.25 years18.5 years23 years
33.25 years4.5 years6.5 years13 years16.25 years
42.25 years3 years4.5 years6 years7.5 years
51 year1.5 years2.25 years3 years3.75 years
6.75 years1 year1.75 years2.25 years2.75 years

Non-Dangerous Felonies, Fourth Offense (Category Three)

210.5 years14 years15.75 years28 years35 years
37.5 years10 years11.25 years20 years25 years
46 years8 years10 years12 years15 years
53 years4 years5 years6 years7.5 years
62.25 years3 years3.75 years4.5 years5.75 years

Arizona Non-Dangerous Felony Charges

When it comes to sentencing, Arizona breaks felonies into a variety of categories, including dangerous and non-dangerous, repeat versus first offenses, and which offenses are eligible for probation.

For defendants convicted of a non-dangerous, first offense felony, the court looks at mitigating and aggravating factors in sentencing. There must be at least two proven mitigating factors to reduce a sentence below the minimum, or two aggravating factors to increase it beyond the maximum. Mitigating factors include the defendant's age and role in the crime. Aggravating factors include whether an accomplice was present and the age of the victim.

Except for certain drug convictions, all people convicted of a first offense, non-dangerous felony are eligible for probation.

In Arizona, the only crimes charged as class 1 felonies are first and second degree murder. First degree murder is punishable by life imprisonment or death. Second degree murder conviction sentences range from 16 years to life in prison.

For other dangerous felonies, sentencing depends on whether it is a first or repeat offense. In addition, Arizona includes a second set of sentencing guidelines for offenders accused of multiple offenses that occurred at different times, but were tried together. These are referred to as repetitive offenses. For example, a single trial for a person accused of committing a string of armed robberies on different dates may result in an increased maximum sentence.

Arizona Dangerous Felony Charges

Dangerous felonies include "serious" and "violent or aggravated" offenses. Charges include, but are not limited to:

  • Murder (first and second degree)
  • Manslaughter
  • Aggravated assault resulting in serious injury
  • Sexual assault
  • Sexual conduct with a child under age 15
  • Dangerous crimes against children
  • Arson of an occupied structure
  • Armed robbery and burglary in the first degree
  • Kidnapping
  • Child prostitution

Dangerous Offenses, First Offense

27 years10.5 years21 years
35 years7.5 years15 years
44 years6 years8 years
52 years3 years4 years
61.5 years2.25 years3 years

Dangerous Offenses, One Historical Prior

214 years15.75 years28 years
310 years11.25 years20 years
48 years10 years12 years
54 years5 years6 years
63 years3.75 years4.5 years

Dangerous Offenses, Two Historical Priors

221 years28 years35 years
315 years20 years25 years
412 years14 years16 years
56 years7 years8 years
64.5 years5.25 years6 years

Dangerous Offenses Repetitive Offenses (Second Offense)

ClassMinimumMaximumIncreased Maximum
210.5 years21 years26.25 years
37.5 years15 years18.75 years
46 years8 years10 years
53 years4 years5 years
62.25 years3 years3.75 years

Dangerous Offenses Repetitive Offenses (Third & Subsequent Offense)

ClassMinimumMaximumIncreased Maximum
215.75 years28 years35 years
311.25 years20 years25 years
410 years12 years15 years
55 years6 years7.5 years
63.75 years4.5 years5.6 years

Dangerous Crimes Against Children

Arizona punishes felonies committed against minors more harshly than most other felonies, and has a different set of sentencing guidelines for these convictions. These crimes include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Attempted first or second degree murder of a minor under 12 years of age
  • Commercial sexual exploitation of a minor (knowingly causing a minor to engage in sexual acts or behaviors, including prostitution and pornography)
  • Furnishing harmful items to minors
  • Luring a minor for sexual exploitation
  • Sexual assault of a minor
  • Sexual exploitation of a minor (knowingly creating, possessing, selling, buying, storing, or transporting child pornography)

Two items not listed above are sexual assault of a minor and attempted murder of a minor under age 12. These are classified under Subsection A and Subsection B respectively. Conviction under Subjection A results in life in prison. Subsection B convictions all carry a possible life sentence with a minimum 13 years, presumptive 20, and maximum 27 years.

Dangerous Offenses Against Children, First Offense

C13 years20 years27 years
D10 years17 years24 years
E5 years10 years15 years
F2.5 years5 years7.5 years

Dangerous Offenses Against Children, One Historical Prior

C23 years30 years37 years
D21 years28 years35 years
E8 years15 years22 years
F8 years15 years22 years

Dangerous Offenses Against Children, Two Historical Priors

E N/A 
F N/A 


Misdemeanor convictions have a presumptive penalty in the median range for sentencing and fines. Those convicted may also be ordered to perform community restitution, particularly if the defendant is unable to pay the cost of incarceration or fines (excluding the surcharge). If the court orders community restitution, the defendant receives a $10 per hour credit toward his or her obligation. So, if the fine is $100, the defendant must perform 10 hours of community restitution.

ClassMax Jail TimeMax Fine (Person)Max Fine (Enterprise)
16 months$2,500$20,000
24 months$750$10,000
330 days$500$2,000
Petty OffenseNo jail time$300$1,000

Arizona Sentencing FAQs

With so many variables, there are always numerous questions surrounding Arizona's sentencing guidelines.

What is a mitigated sentence?

A mitigated sentence is one that is shorter than the minimum due to the presence of two or mitigating factors. Arizona judges may consider a variety of mitigating factors, including:

  • The defendant's age
  • Did the defendant play a minor role in committing the crime
  • The defendant's capacity to understand what he or she did was wrong
  • Whether the defendant was under duress
  • Support from the defendant's family, church, or community

What is an aggravated sentence?

An aggravated sentence is one that is longer than the maximum due to the presence of two or more aggravating factors. Arizona judges may consider a variety of aggravating factors, including:

  • Did the defendant have an accomplice
  • Did the defendant take or damage any property
  • Did the defendant use or threaten to use a deadly weapon in commission of the crime
  • Does the defendant have a past felony history
  • Was the crime committed in a heinous, cruel, or depraved manner
  • Was the motivation of the crime financial gain or to acquire something of value

What is the minimum amount of jail time for a felony conviction?

The minimum sentence possible for a felony conviction is 90 days. All first offense, non-dangerous felony convictions are eligible for probation instead of jail time.

What is a class 6 felony?

Class 6 felonies include possession of marijuana (personal use amount and non-medical), possession of drug paraphernalia, unlawful use of means of transportation (passenger), and theft of property valued over $1,000.

What is a class 5 felony?

Class 5 felonies include theft of property valued over $2,000, unlawful use of means of transportation (driver), personal use possession of marijuana (over 2 pounds), and possession of marijuana for sale (under two pounds).

What is a class 4 felony?

Class 4 felonies include theft of property valued over $3,000, simple possession of dangerous drugs (methamphetamine), and growing marijuana (non-medical).

What is a class 3 felony?

Class 3 felonies include theft of property valued over $4,000, second degree burglary, and theft of means of transportation.

What is a class 2 felony?

Class 2 felonies include theft of property valued over $25,000, trafficking stolen property, first degree burglary, sexual molestation of a child, and possession of danger drugs (for sale).

What is a class 1 felony?

There are only two class 1 felonies in Arizona: first degree murder and second degree murder.

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