Special Offender Charge for Drug Offenses in Fort Collins

Have you been charged as a Special Offender relating to a Drug Crime? Read more about this complicated law and how an experienced lawyer can help defend you
A Special Offender charge in Larimer, Boulder, and Grand County, is filed by the district attorney when certain aggravating factors are present related to drug cases. C.R.S. 18-18-407 breaks down all the aggravating factors which may be present to allow the DA to charge the accused with the Special Offender Drug charge. It is a long and complicated law. It an effort to make this law more understandable, we have broken down the parts and explained them in real-world terms. Please note that for the purpose of this page, when we reference the drug business, we are referring to the manufacturing, distribution, sale, or dispensing of a controlled substance.

Larimer County Drug Defense Attorney: What is the Special Offender Law in Fort Collins?

In Fort Collins, Loveland, or Estes Park, if one or more of the following aggravating circumstances apply to you, you may be charged as a Special Offender:

(a) You have participated in a felony drug business where:

  • This is your career – where most of your income is derived
  • You have special skill or expertise in this illegal career

(b) You are in a conspiracy with one or more persons to commit a pattern of participation in a felony drug business where:

  • During this conspiracy, you agree to initiate, organize, plan, finance, direct, manage or supervise the conspiracy or any part of the drug business; or
  • During the conspiracy, you give or receive a bribe, or use force in connection with any part of the drug business

(c) You brought into Colorado more than:

  • 14 grams of any schedule I or II controlled substance
  • 7 grams of methamphetamine (meth), heroin, ketamine, or cathinones
  • 10 milligrams of flunitrazepam

(d) At the time of the drug crime, you had a deadly weapon or had access to a firearm or gun which posed risk to others

(e) You solicited, induced, encouraged, intimidated, employed, hired, or procured a child, kid, or teenager to assist in any part of the drug business (including possession)

(f) You have two or more drug business violations and have continued to violate:

  • Where you are the management, organizer or supervisor in the drug business of 5 or more people
  • Where you get much or all of your income from this management role in the drug business

(g) You conduct your drug business:

  • On school grounds;
  • At a public park or playground;
  • At a public housing development;
  • In any school vehicle; or
  • Within 1,000 feet of any of the above mentioned places.

Fort Collins Drug Defense Lawyer: Important Clarifications with the Special Offender Law

Colorado law has clarified a few key aspects to this law. In order for the drug business to make up a “substantial source of a person’s income,” the following must apply:

  • During the course of a year or more, the money received from the drug business exceeds what a person would make with a full time minimum wage job OR
  • The money received from the drug business exceeds 50% of a person’s declared gross income

Special skill or expertise” in the drug business includes:

  • An unusual knowledge, judgment, or ability (ex. manual dexterity, facilitating the initiation, organizing, planning, financing, directing, managing, supervising, executing, or concealing) in any part of the drug business;
  • The escape from detection or apprehension while participating in the drug business;
  • The disposition of the profits of the drug business.

What is the Sentence for Special Offender Drug Crime in Fort Collins / Larimer County?

It is important for you to have a lawyer who understands this law and how to defend a client facing these charges.

The Special Offender charge is a class 1 drug felony. This level drug felony includes a possible sentence of 8 to 32 years imprisonment in the Department of Corrections. Because Colorado is a mandatory parole state, there is a 3 years mandatory parole period when the prison sentence is complete. Class 1 drug felonies also carry a $5,000 – $1,000,000 fine, which is decided by the judge after getting a recommendation from the district attorney.

It is important you are well informed about your Special Offender drug charges, but it more important for you to have a lawyer who understands this law and how to defend a client facing these charges. The experienced attorneys from the O’Malley Law Office will give you hope during you free consultation, showing you all your options and explaining possible outcomes. Don’t leave your future to chance. With so much at stake, trust your life to the best criminal defense attorneys in Fort Collins and all Northern Colorado.

If you or a loved one have been charged as a Drug Special Offender, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent and call a knowledgeable attorney from the O’Malley Law Office immediately at 970-658-0007. We can even schedule an inmate visit at the Larimer County Jail. Together, we can protect your future.