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Felony Crimes

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A"felony" in Kentucky is any crime that is punishable by one or more year(s) in state prison. Less serious crimes (called misdemeanors) are punishable by up to twelve (12) months in jail.

Kentucky felonies are divided into categories which indicate their severity.  Capital offenses are the most severe with the harshest punishment, followed by Class A, B, C, and D felonies.

Capital Offenses

Murder is a capital offense in Kentucky. Capital offenses are punishable by:

  • death
  • life without parole
  • 25 years to life in prison, or
  • 20 to 50 years’ imprisonment.

(Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 507.020, 532.060.)

Class A Felony

A class A felony is punishable by 20 to 50 years in prison, or life imprisonment. (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 532.020, 532.060.)

Class B Felony

Class B felonies in Kentucky are punishable by ten to 20 years’ imprisonment. (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 532.020, 532.060.)

Class C Felony

A conviction for a Class C felony can result in a prison term of five to ten years. (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 532.020, 532.060.)

Class D Felony

Finally, a Class D felony is punishable by one to five years in prison. (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 532.020, 532.060.)


In addition to prison terms, people who are convicted of felonies in Kentucky will be sentenced to pay a fine of $1,000 to $10,000. (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 534.030.)

Prior Felony Convictions

People who are convicted of felonies in Kentucky and have prior felony convictions are subject to longer prison terms than people who are convicted of the same crimes but do not have a felony criminal record.  A charge of Persistent Felony Offender in the First or second degree can be added in such circumstances, which greatly impacts probation and parole eligibility.  (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 532.080.)

Statute of Limitations

Kentucky has NO statute of limitations for felony crimes.

The Value of Legal Assistance

A felony conviction has serious and permanent consequences. Aside from long-term incarceration, a felony conviction can negatively impact and individual's ability to obtain a job, qualify for a professional license, or earn a graduate degree.  Finally, Kentucky law does not allow expungement of a felony under any circumstances.

Accordingly, if you are charged with felony, the best way to proceed is to work with an experienced criminal defense attorney.  Amanda Wills has more than ten (10) years experience in criminal court in and around Central Kentucky.  She can tell you how what to expect in court and how to protect your rights.  She has the experience and knowledge necessary to get you the very best results possible in your case.  Call today.