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Criminal Confinement in Indiana

When a person substantially interferes with the liberty of another person, restricting their ability to move or to leave a dwelling, they risk being charged with criminal confinement in Indiana. This is a serious criminal offense and is treated as such by both law enforcement and Indiana courts. Given this, it’s important for legal professionals, as well as members of the general public, to understand the specifics of Indiana’s law on criminal confinement, and what factors can heighten the legal repercussions for the accused.  

If you have any further questions about criminal confinement, or have been charged with this offense, do not hesitate to reach out to the Indiana criminal defense lawyers at Keffer Hirschauer LLP. Our firm has handled cases of this nature in the past and understands what is required to secure the best possible results in the case against you. To speak with a defense attorney today, call 317-857-0160 or complete our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.  

Looking for a Criminal Defense Attorney in Indiana? Call Keffer Hirschauer LLP Today.

 What is Criminal Confinement in Indiana?

Indiana’s law on criminal confinement, located in Indiana Code 35-42-3-3, aims to protect individuals’ freedom and personal liberty, emphasizing the seriousness of actions that infringe upon these rights. Under this law, an act of criminal confinement in Indiana may occur when a person knowingly or intentionally confines another person without their consent. In other words, it prohibits a person from restricting another person’s movement or freedom to leave, provided it is against the victim’s will.  

For example, consider a situation where individual A forcibly detains individual B by locking them in a room against their will. Individual A does this with the intent to intimidate Individual B or to exert control over them. In this scenario, Individual A’s actions clearly constitute criminal confinement as per Indiana law. This is because Individual A knowingly restricts Individual B’s freedom of movement without their consent, fitting the definition of the offense.  

Enhancing Circumstances for Criminal Confinement  

Generally, criminal confinement is considered a Level 6 felony offense. However, it can be charged as a more serious offense if certain aggravating circumstances in Indiana apply to the offense. For instance, a person may be charged with a Level 5 felony for criminal confinement if the victim is less than 14 years of age and is not the offender’s child; the offense is committed using a vehicle; or the offense resulted in bodily injury to another person, including the victim. In addition, if the criminal confinement caused moderate bodily injury to another person, including the victim, the charge may be elevated to a Level 4 felony.  

Under more serious circumstances a person may be charged with Level 3 felony for criminal confinement in Indiana. This can occur when the offense is committed while armed with a deadly weapon or while on an aircraft. It can also occur if the criminal confinement caused serious bodily injury to another person, including the victim.  

Finally, a person may be charged with a Level 2 felony if they committed an act of criminal confinement under any of the following circumstances:  

  • With the intent to obtain ransom 
  • While hijacking a vehicle 
  • With the intent to obtain the release, or intent to aide in the escape, of any person from lawful incarceration 
  • With intent to use the person confined as a shield or hostage 

Kidnapping vs. Criminal Confinement 

On the surface, kidnapping and criminal confinement may seem like similar criminal offenses. In fact, they are both defined as “Offenses Against the Person,” in Chapter 3 of Indiana Code 35-42. However, they are two separate offenses, addressing different criminal actions.  

The critical difference between kidnapping and criminal confinement in Indiana lies in the nature and extent of the victim’s displacement. In criminal confinement, the victim’s movement is restricted in a particular location without their consent, but there is no requirement of movement from one place to another. Kidnapping, by contrast, must involve the removal or transportation of the victim, which clearly sets the act apart as a distinct criminal offense.  

Interestingly, the main similarity between kidnapping and criminal confinement in Indiana is how they’re classified. In the same manner of the laws on criminal confinement, an act of kidnapping is, at its lowest level, a Level 6 felony. However, depending on the circumstances, a person may be charged with a more serious kidnapping offense.  

  • Level 5 Felony Kidnapping: if the victim is less than 14 years of age and is not the offender’s child; the offense is committed using a vehicle; or the offense resulted in bodily injury to another person, including the victim 
  • Level 4 Felony Kidnapping: if the offense caused moderate bodily injury to another person, including the victim 
  • Level 3 Felony Kidnapping: the offense is committed while armed with a deadly weapon; while on an aircraft; or resulted in serious bodily injury to another person, including the victim 
  • Level 2 Felony Kidnapping:  the offense is committed with the intent to obtain ransom; while hijacking a vehicle; with the intent to obtain the release, or intent to aide in the escape, of any person from lawful incarceration; or with intent to use the person confined as a shield or hostage 

Potential Penalties

Under the Indiana sentencing guidelines, the potential penalties for criminal confinement range quite dramatically. For less serious offenses, a person convicted of this crime as a Level 6 felony could face between 6 months to 2.5 years in prison; while those convicted of a Level 5 felony could face between 1 and 6 years in prison. More serious acts of criminal confinement, however, may result in longer sentences. For instance, a person convicted of criminal confinement in Indiana as a Level 2 felony could be behind bars for up to 30 years.  

Sex Offender Classification 

It’s important to understand that, under some circumstances, a person convicted of criminal confinement in Indiana could be deemed a “sex offender” under Indiana Code 11-8-8-4.5. This can occur when, at the time the crime occurred, the victim was less than 18 years of age and the person who confined or removed the victim is not their parent or guardian.  

Under the Indiana sex offender laws, offenders are required to register with the Indiana sex offender registry for a period of at least 10 years. However, they could be required to register for life, if they are deemed a sexually violent predator; their victim was under the age of 12; their offense caused serious bodily injury to the victim; they used the threat of force against the victim; or they have two separate convictions that require them to register as a sex offender. 

Those required to register as sex offenders in Indiana face an incredible number of day-to-day restrictions and scrutiny, both from the public and the police. Beyond having their pictures and personal information published on the Indiana Sex and Violent Offender Registry, these offenders have strict limitations on where they can live, work, and how they communicate with others. Given this, they often have trouble securing housing and employment, and encounter serious animosity from members of their community. On top of that, they may also find it challenging to stay in compliance with the Indiana sex offender restrictions, ultimately leading to further troubles with the law.  

Facing a Criminal Confinement Charge in Indiana? 

In light of the complexities and severity of criminal confinement in Indiana, it is crucial for individuals to recognize the gravity of such charges and the profound implications they can have on one’s life. For the accused, the potential repercussions extend far beyond the immediate legal penalties. The prospect of being labeled a sex offender, with the attendant lifelong stigma and restrictions, underscores the critical importance of competent legal representation. This is where Indiana criminal defense law firms like Keffer Hirschauer LLP play a pivotal role.  

The criminal defense lawyers at Keffer Hirschauer LLP have the expertise and experience required to capably navigate the complexities of criminal confinement cases. This is often invaluable to clients, especially when it comes to safeguarding their rights, ensuring a fair trial, and ultimately, securing the optimal outcome in the matter. Our firm, which was founded by two former deputy prosecutors, Bradley Keffer and Tom Hirschauer III, takes a team-based approach to cases like these. This means that we have the resources needed to thoroughly investigate your case and the allegations made against you. It also means our firm will stand beside you for the entire case, from initial arrest to trial, sentencing, and appeals, if needed. In other words, we’re invested in you and will do all it takes to minimize your potential penalties and protect both your rights and your future.  

To speak with an Indiana criminal defense attorney today, call 317-857-0160 or complete our online contact form to schedule a free consultation. Our firm stands ready to begin working on your defense.  

Summary
Article Name
Criminal Confinement in Indiana
Description
This article discusses the offense of criminal confinement in Indiana, and the potential penalties for being convicted of such offense.
Publisher Name
Keffer Hirschauer LLP

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