Two sentences can be ordered to be served either:
- concurrent (at the same time); or
- consecutively (one after the other).
Whenever possible, you want your sentence to run concurrently. However, the Judge must order a consecutive sentence if you were:
- on probation at the time of the new offense
- on parole at the time of the new offense
- incarcerated at the time of the new offense,
- released on bond at the time of the new offense,
- released on your own recognizance at the time of the new offense; or
- a firearm was used in the commission of the offense.
Additionally, there are limits on the amount of time that can be ordered for consecutive sentences for one “episode of criminal conduct” under IC § 35-50-1-2(d).
IC § 35-50-1-2. Terms: consecutive and concurrent.
(a) As used in this section, “crime of violence” means the following:
(1) Murder (IC 35-42-1-1).
(2) Attempted murder (IC 35-41-5-1).
(3) Voluntary manslaughter (IC 35-42-1-3).
(4) Involuntary manslaughter (IC 35-42-1-4).
(5) Reckless homicide (IC 35-42-1-5).
(6) Aggravated battery (IC 35-42-2-1.5).
(7) Kidnapping (IC 35-42-3-2).
(8) Rape (IC 35-42-4-1).
(9) Criminal deviate conduct (IC 35-42-4-2) (before its repeal).
(10) Child molesting (IC 35-42-4-3).
(11) Sexual misconduct with a minor as a Level 1 felony under IC 35-42-4-9(a)(2) or a Level 2 felony under IC 35-42-4-9(b)(2).
(12) Robbery as a Level 2 felony or a Level 3 felony (IC 35-42-5-1).
(13) Burglary as a Level 1 felony, Level 2 felony, Level 3 felony, or Level 4 felony (IC 35-43-2-1).
(14) Operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death (IC 9-30-5-5).
(15) Operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing serious bodily injury to another person (IC 9-30-5-4).
(16) Resisting law enforcement as a felony (IC 35-44.1-3-1).
(17) Unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon (IC 35-47-4-5).
(b) As used in this section, “episode of criminal conduct” means offenses or a connected series of offenses that are closely related in time, place, and circumstance.
(c) Except as provided in subsection (e) or (f) the court shall determine whether terms of imprisonment shall be served concurrently or consecutively. The court may consider the:
(1) aggravating circumstances in IC 35-38-1-7.1(a); and
(2) mitigating circumstances in IC 35-38-1-7.1(b);
in making a determination under this subsection. The court may order terms of imprisonment to be served consecutively even if the sentences are not imposed at the same time. However, except for crimes of violence, the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment, exclusive of terms of imprisonment under IC 35-50-2-8 and IC 35-50-2-10 (before its repeal) to which the defendant is sentenced for felony convictions arising out of an episode of criminal conduct shall not exceed the period described in subsection (d).
(d) Except as provided in subsection (c), the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment to which the defendant is sentenced for felony convictions arising out of an episode of criminal conduct may not exceed the following:
(1) If the most serious crime for which the defendant is sentenced is a Level 6 felony, the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment may not exceed four (4) years.
(2) If the most serious crime for which the defendant is sentenced is a Level 5 felony, the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment may not exceed seven (7) years.
(3) If the most serious crime for which the defendant is sentenced is a Level 4 felony, the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment may not exceed fifteen (15) years.
(4) If the most serious crime for which the defendant is sentenced is a Level 3 felony, the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment may not exceed twenty (20) years.
(5) If the most serious crime for which the defendant is sentenced is a Level 2 felony, the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment may not exceed thirty-two (32) years.
(6) If the most serious crime for which the defendant is sentenced is a Level 1 felony, the total of the consecutive terms of imprisonment may not exceed forty-two (42) years.
(e) If, after being arrested for one (1) crime, a person commits another crime:
(1) before the date the person is discharged from probation, parole, or a term of imprisonment imposed for the first crime; or
(2) while the person is released:
(A) upon the person’s own recognizance; or
(B) on bond;
the terms of imprisonment for the crimes shall be served consecutively, regardless of the order in which the crimes are tried and sentences are imposed.
(f) If the factfinder determines under IC 35-50-2-11 that a person used a firearm in the commission of the offense for which the person was convicted, the term of imprisonment for the underlying offense and the additional term of imprisonment imposed under IC 35-50-2-11 must be served consecutively.
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