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What is criminal recklessness?

On Behalf of | Jul 10, 2022 | Criminal Defense

Criminal recklessness is knowingly, intentionally or recklessly doing something that poses a substantial risk of injury to others. Whether it’s a misdemeanor or felony depends on the elements of the individual case. Indiana criminal law has clear guidelines that determine whether a criminal recklessness charge is a misdemeanor or a felony.

Class B misdemeanor

For criminal recklessness to be a Class B misdemeanor, it usually can’t involve a deadly weapon. The victim must also survive without catastrophic injuries. Jail time for a Class B misdemeanor could be up to 180 days, and the fine can be up to $5,000.

Level 6 felony

Aggressive driving that causes another person to sustain a serious injury is a Level 6 felony of criminal recklessness in Indiana. A crime of criminal recklessness is also a Level 6 felony if you committed it while armed with a deadly weapon. Someone convicted of this crime may face up to two and a half years in prison and a maximum $10,000 fine.

Level 5 felony

Indiana criminal law considers it a Level 5 felony if you shoot into an inhabited dwelling or a building where people are likely to gather. Aggressive driving that results in death or catastrophic injury is a Level 5 felony as well. State law defines “catastrophic injury” as an injury that impairs a person’s ability to live independently for at least one year. Examples of catastrophic injuries include intellectual disabilities, blindness, deafness and paralysis. A prison sentence for a Level 5 felony could be up to six years with a maximum fine of $10,000.

Criminal recklessness is one of the possible charges that someone faces should they commit a reckless act that results in serious injury to another person.