Report: Charlie Sheen to be Charged With Felony
Updated: From an email press release from the Aspen Sheriff's on Charlie Sheen, it looks like charges will be filed against him, one of which seems likely to be a felony. The press release mentions the two felony charges and misdemeanor he was arrested for, but stops short of saying whether all or some of those will be the actual charges filed. Previously, the DA said he wouldn't decide whether to charge him until shortly before his Feb. 8 hearing. TMZ says he will be charged with Felony Menacing.
Prediction: When all is said and done, he'll plead to a felony under a deferred judgment and a misdemeanor. The misdemeanor plea will prevent him from getting his record sealed.
If TMZ is correct, the felony assault and the misdemeanor criminal mischief charges which Aspen police included on his arrest documents won't be filed.
District Attorneys in Colorado often require defendants to plead to both a deferred judgment on a felony and a misdemeanor because Colorado doesn't allow for sealing of misdemeanor convictions. They stay on your record permanently.
This combination of charges also makes sense because I think the second degree assault would be hard to prove under the facts according to the arrest affidavit. The menacing seems to be a better fit. The statute (18-3-206) reads:
(1) A person commits the crime of menacing if, by any threat or physical action, he or she knowingly places or attempts to place another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury. Menacing is a class 3 misdemeanor, but, it is a class 5 felony if committed:
(a) By the use of a deadly weapon or any article used or fashioned in a manner to cause a person to reasonably believe that the article is a deadly weapon; or
(b) By the person representing verbally or otherwise that he or she is armed with a deadly weapon.
TMZ doesn't think he's pleading guilty on the 8th, just being advised of the charges. It sounds to me like a done deal to me, for a plea to a felony with a deferred judgment and a misdemeanor, and since it's in District Court, not County Court, it could all happen on the 8th but we'll see. They may not have an agreement on terms of the d.j. For example, while it would include probation, the judge can impose up to 90 days as a condition of probation. If that's still on table, Sheen may want to delay a plea. This is all speculation though. All that's known for sure is that some charges will be filed and Sheen will be advised of them in court on the 8th.
The Judge will also address the Sheens' joint motion to modify the protective order at the hearing. Sheen's wife, who is out of the hospital, will be present, by court order.
The charges may be released tomorrow. The judge has issued a decorum order: no computers or twittering or text messaging from the courtroom to those outside. No camera phones or cameras.
The courtroom holds 60 people. The judge says there will be 3 seats each for the defense, prosecution and victim. The media will get 20 and the general public 31. The Aspen media (2 papers, 2 radio stations) are guaranteed seats. The other media seats are by lottery.
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