Arkansas Criminal Statute of Limitations
NOLO Local Defense Lawyers
Enter your zip code to find local criminal defense lawyers.
Below are the statutes of limitation for criminal cases in Arkansas which set forth the time periods within which a legal proceeding must be commenced. If the state fails to bring a case within the applicable time period, it loses its right to prosecute for that crime forever. In general, the more violent the crime, the longer the statute of limitations, and with some crimes there is no statute of limitations. In certain instances, the statute of limitations may be tolled, or suspended, which grants the state additional time to commence a legal action.
Ark. Code Ann. § 5-1-109
There is no statute of limitations for: Murder; Rape if DNA evidence can be used
Class Y felony or Class A felony: 6 years
Class B felony, Class C felony, Class D felony, or an unclassified felony: 3 years
Misdemeanors or violations: 1 year
Fraud or breach of a fiduciary obligation: 1 year after discovery, up to a maximum of 10 years
Felonious conduct in office by a public servant: 5 years after the person leaves office or employment or 5 years after the offense is discovered, whichever is sooner, up to a maximum of 10 years
Tolling Provisions: The statute of limitations does not run (1) during any time when the accused is continually absent from the state or has no reasonably ascertainable place of abode or work within the state, up to a maximum of 3 years; (2) if a prosecution against the accused for the same conduct is already pending in the state.
Even if the statute of limitations has expired, a prosecution may be commenced for certain offenses committed against minors if the violation was not previously reported and the applicable statute of limitations period has not expired since the victim reached eighteen (18) years of age. This provision applies to:
Battery in the first degree, Battery in the second degree, Aggravated assault, Terroristic threatening in the first degree, Kidnapping, False imprisonment in the first degree, Permanent detention or restraint, Rape, Sexual assault in the first degree, Sexual assault in the second degree, Sexual assault in the third degree, Sexual assault in the fourth degree, Incest, Endangering the welfare of a minor in the first degree, Permitting abuse of a minor, Engaging children in sexually explicit conduct for use in visual or print medium, Transportation of minors for prohibited sexual conduct, Employing or consenting to the use of a child in a sexual performance, Producing, directing, or promoting a sexual performance by a child, Computer child pornography, Computer exploitation of a child in the first degree, and Criminal attempt, criminal solicitation, or criminal conspiracy to commit any offense.