What is a Class A Felony : Sentence and Penalties for Class A Felony

North Carolina’s felonies can be classified into different “classes” that are used to determine the extent of the punishment to be given to a certain person. Class A felonies are considered to be most severe and serious felony in North Carolina.

This is a high-level felony, and is the worst kind of felony. These include crimes such as arson, burglary, armed robbery, voluntary manslaughter and murder. In fact, Class A felonies include examples such as:

First-degree murder

Murder is the intentional killing of a human being that is unlawful. This means it is unjustified and is often premeditated. Murders are usually committed with the intention to harm and kill a person.

Unlawful use of a weapon of mass destruction

A “weapon of mass destruction” may apply to the following:

  • Bomb; or
  • Grenade; or
  • Rocket having a propellant charge of more than four ounces; or
  • Missile having an explosive or incendiary charge of more than one-quarter ounce; or
  • Mine; or
  • Device similar to any of the devices above, or
  • A type that can expel a projectile by an action of an explosive or other propellant; or
  • Any firearm that is capable of fully automatic fire; or
  • Any combination of parts either designed or intended for use in converting any device into any of the weapons described above

Sentencing, Prior Criminal Record

Class A felony: death or life without parole

For any felony offense aside from Class A felonies, North Carolina’s courts also have to assess a person’s prior criminal record level. These convictions are worth “points,” which can determine the overall sentence of a person:

Each prior Class A felony conviction: 10 points

Each prior misdemeanor conviction: 1 point

Statute of Limitations

Others may ask about what are called “statute of limitations.” These give prosecutors only a limited amount of time to file criminal charges. Once someone commits a crime, prosecutors must file the charges within a legally established limit. If a prosecutor misses this, the charge can no longer be filed.

However, North Carolina is one of the very few states that do not have such a time limit.

Those who would like to know more about the specifics of crimes in North Carolina may contact lawyers and legal experts from nearby courts for consultations.