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What's the penalty for attempting to escape from prison in Nevada?

Posted by Neil Shouse | Jan 01, 2019 | 0 Comments

The Nevada penalties for attempting to escape from prison depend on whether the defendant is incarcerated for a misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, or a felony.

Defendants in custody for a gross misdemeanor or misdemeanor

Nevada inmates who have been charged with or convicted of a gross misdemeanor or misdemeanor face the following penalties if they attempt to escape:

If they do not use a dangerous weapon to facilitate the breakout, attempting to escape is a gross misdemeanor, carrying:

  • up to 364 days in jail and/or
  • up to $2,000 in fines

If they do use a dangerous weapon to facilitate the breakout, attempting to escape is a category B felony, carrying:

Defendants in custody for a felony

Nevada inmates who have been charged with or convicted of a felony will be charged with a category B felony if they attempt to escape. The specific penalties depend on whether any of these three "aggravating circumstances" apply:

  1. the defendant used a dangerous weapon,
  2. the defendant took a person hostage, and/or
  3. the escape attempt caused someone to sustain substantial bodily harm

If any of these three aggravating circumstances occurred, the defendant faces:

  • 2 to 20 years in prison, and
  • possibly up to $20,000 in fines

Furthermore, the sentence must run consecutively with the sentence for the underlying felony. Finally, the judge may not grant probation or suspend the sentence.

If none of these three aggravating circumstances applies, the defendant faces:

  • 1 to 10 years in prison, and
  • possibly up to $10,000 in fines

Helping a prisoner escape

The Nevada penalty for helping an inmate try to escape depends on whether the inmate is incarcerated for a misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, or a felony.

If the inmate is in custody for a felony, helping him/her try to escape is a category B felony, carrying:

  • 1 to 10 years in prison, and
  • possibly up to $10,000 in fines

If the inmate is in jail for a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor, helping him/her try to escape is a gross misdemeanor as long as no dangerous weapon is used to facilitate the breakout. Gross misdemeanor penalties include:

  • up to 364 days in jail and/or
  • up to $2,000 in fines

But if weapons are used to facilitate the breakout, helping the inmate escape is a category B felony, carrying;

  • 1 to 6 years in prison, and
  • possibly a fine of up to $5,000

Concealing an escaped prisoner

Knowingly concealing a person who has escaped from custody is a crime in Nevada. The penalty depends on whether the inmate was incarcerated for a misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, or a felony.

If the inmate was in custody for a misdemeanor, concealing him/her is also a misdemeanor, carrying:

  • up to 6 months in jail and/or
  • up to $1,000 in fines

If the inmate was in custody for a gross misdemeanor, concealing him/her is also a gross misdemeanor, carrying:

  • up to 364 days in jail and/or
  • up to $2,000 in fines

If the inmate was in custody for a felony, concealing him/her is a category C felony, carrying:

  • 1 to 5 years in prison, and
  • up to $10,000 in fines 

Legal References:

NRS 212.090  Penalties for prisoner who escapes.  A prisoner confined in a prison, or being in the lawful custody of an officer or other person, who escapes or attempts to escape from prison or custody, if the prisoner is held on a charge, conviction or sentence of:

      1.  A felony, shall be punished:

      (a) Where a dangerous weapon is used or one or more hostages are taken to facilitate the escape or attempted escape, or substantial bodily harm results to anyone as a direct result of the escape or attempted escape, for a category B felony by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 2 years and a maximum term of not more than 20 years, and may be further punished by a fine of not more than $20,000. The sentence imposed pursuant to this paragraph must run consecutively after any sentence imposed for the original felony, and is not subject to suspension or the granting of probation.

      (b) Where none of the aggravating factors specified in paragraph (a) are present, for a category B felony by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 1 year and a maximum term of not more than 10 years, and may be further punished by a fine of not more than $10,000.

      2.  A gross misdemeanor or misdemeanor, shall be punished:

      (a) Where a dangerous weapon is used to facilitate the escape or attempted escape, for a category B felony by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 1 year and a maximum term of not more than 6 years, and may be further punished by a fine of not more than $5,000.

      (b) Where no dangerous weapon is used, for a gross misdemeanor.

NRS 212.100  Aiding prisoner to escape.  A person who, with the intent to effect or facilitate the escape of a prisoner, whether the escape is effected or attempted or not, conveys or sends to a prisoner any information or aid, or conveys or sends into a prison any disguise, instrument, weapon or other thing, or aids or assists a prisoner in escaping or attempting to escape from the lawful custody of a sheriff or other officer or person, shall be punished if the prisoner is held upon a charge, arrest, commitment, conviction or a sentence:

      1.  For a felony, for a category B felony by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 1 year and a maximum term of not more than 10 years, and may be further punished by a fine of not more than $10,000.

      2.  For a gross misdemeanor or misdemeanor:

      (a) Where a dangerous weapon is used to effect or facilitate the escape or attempted escape, for a category B felony by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 1 year and a maximum term of not more than 6 years, and may be further punished by a fine of not more than $5,000.

      (b) Where no dangerous weapon is used, for a gross misdemeanor.

NRS 212.130  Concealing escaped prisoner.  A person who knowingly conceals, or harbors for the purpose of concealment, a prisoner who has escaped or is escaping from custody shall be punished, according to the charge or conviction or sentence upon which the prisoner was held:

      1.  For a category C felony as provided in NRS 193.130, if the prisoner was held for a felony.

      2.  For a gross misdemeanor, if the prisoner was held for a gross misdemeanor.

      3.  For a misdemeanor, if the prisoner was held for a misdemeanor.

About the Author

Neil Shouse

Southern California DUI Defense attorney Neil Shouse graduated with honors from UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School (and completed additional graduate studies at MIT).

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