In Iowa, felonies are defined as criminal offenses that carry a prison sentence of five years or more. Felonies are divided into four classes—Class “A” felonies, Class "B" felonies, Class "C" felonies and Class "D" felonies. Class “A” felonies are the most severe in Iowa and Class "D" felonies are the least severe in Iowa. Below is a breakdown of the classes, including a small sample of the criminal charges and sentences that fall within each class of felony in Iowa. This overview does not cover every exception to the Iowa felony class delineations, nor does it discuss the aggravating/mitigating factors that could alter the terms of a felony sentence.
Class “A” Felony
Sample Charges: 1st degree murder, 1st degree sexual abuse, 1st degree kidnapping
Sample Sentence: Life imprisonment without possibility of parole (unless the Governor of Iowa commutes the sentence to a term of years or the defendant was under 18 at the time of the offense)
Class “B” Felony
Sample Charges: 2nd degree murder, 2nd degree sexual abuse, 2nd degree kidnapping, 1st degree robbery, 1st degree arson, 1st degree burglary, certain drug crimes
Sample Sentence: Up to 25 years imprisonment (except 2nd degree murder is up to 50 years)
Class “C” Felony
Sample Charges: Voluntary manslaughter, 3rd degree sexual abuse, 3rd degree kidnapping, 2nd degree robbery, 2nd degree arson, 2nd degree burglary, 1st degree theft, human trafficking where victim is under 18, certain drug crimes
Sample Sentence: Up to 10 years of imprisonment and a potential fine of $1000.00 to $10,000.00
Class “D” Felony
Sample Charges: Involuntary manslaughter, 3rd degree burglary, theft in the 2nd degree, human trafficking, operating while under the influence—3rd offense or more, extortion, incest, certain drug crimes
Sample Sentence: Up to 5 years imprisonment and a potential fine of $750.00 to $7,500.00
Unless a deferred judgment is granted felony records in Iowa cannot be expunged. Also, a person convicted of a felony loses the right to vote and bear arms. For more information on felonies, see Iowa Code Section 902.