Sentence Modification

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Indiana Code 35-38-1-17, titled, “Reduction or Suspension of Sentence”, can be used to ask a Court to modify your sentence. This statute divides offenders into violent and non-violent criminals. For offenders who are considered non-violent criminals, you may petition the court at any time after you begin serving your sentence. If you are incarcerated in the Department of Corrections, the Court will also need a report regarding your conduct while imprisoned. The Court will most likely set a hearing to hear evidence and determine if your sentence should be modified.

If you went to a trial or pled open, the court may reduce or suspend the sentence and impose any sentence the court was authorized to impose at the time of the original sentencing. If you were sentenced pursuant to a plea agreement, the court may modify your sentence, but the court must stay within the terms of the plea unless the prosecutor agrees otherwise.

A person under the non-violent criminal category may only file a petition for modification once per year, with a maximum of twice during any consecutive period of incarceration.

Anyone who has been convicted of the following offenses are considered “violent criminals” for purposes of this modification statute:

  • murder
  • attempted murder
  • voluntary manslaughter
  • involuntary manslaughter
  • reckless homicide
  • aggravated battery
  • kidnapping
  • rape
  • criminal deviate conduct
  • child molesting
  • sexual misconduct with a minor as a class A or B Felony or a Level 1 or 2 felony
  • robbery as a Class A or B Felony or a Level 2 or 3 Felony
  • burglary as a Class A or B Felony or a Level 1, 2, 3, or 4 Felony
  • unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon.

If you are considered a “violent criminal”, you may file one petition for sentence modification within one year of being sentenced. After this first year expired, you may not file a petition for sentence modification without the consent of the prosecuting attorney.

If you are interested in pursuing a sentence modification, please reach out to Banks and Brower today to get in touch with one of our experienced attorneys. We will walk you through the process and give you an honest opinion on whether or not you have a chance at getting your sentence modified. We can be reached by phone (317) 870-0019 or email 24/7.