Criminal penalties

Iowa classifies crimes into felony and misdemeanor offenses and by their severity. More severe crimes, such as Forgery, Possession with Intent to Deliver, Willful Injury are felony offenses. Less severe crimes, such as some types of theft, Operating While Intoxicated, 1st Offense are misdemeanors.

While some criminal charges carry punishments specifically mandated for that crime, generally speaking the offense classifications and corresponding sentencing ranges are listed below.

Remember if a fine is imposed, there is also a thirty-two (32) percent surcharge on any fine and there may be a $125.00 Law Enforcement Initiative surcharge, a $10.00 D.A.R.E. surcharge and there will always be court costs and victim restitution, if any.

Maximum misdemeanor penalties

Classification  Sentencing Range
Aggravated Misdemeanor 2 years imprisonment or up to 1 year in jail and a fine of $625 to $6,250
Serious Misdemeanor 1 year in jail and a fine of $315 to $1,875
Simple Misdemeanor 30 days in jail and a fine of $65 to $625

Maximum felony penalties

Classification Sentencing Range
Class A Felony Life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. (The only way to be paroled is if the governor commutes the sentence.
Class B Felony 25 years imprisonment
Class C Felony 10 years imprisonment and a potential fine of $1,000 to $10,000
Class D Felony 5 years imprisonment and a potential fine of $750 to $7,500


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