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SENTENCING ENHANCEMENTS

enhancementsStatistically, prosecutors only have to prove 2 or 3 percent of all their criminal cases. In other words, 97 to 98 percent of all cases get resolved with a voluntary plea by the defendant. 97 to 98 percent of all criminal defendants are afraid to demand a jury trial because they perceive the risk is too great, they fear they will not receive a fair trial and/or they cannot find an experienced lawyer to defend them with a jury trial.

 

Mr. Sherman welcomes the opportunity to speak with you in order to help you understand the benefit of preparing for the jury trial. The most effective way to negotiate a favorable resolution of your case is by finding evidence that challenges the strength of the State’s allegations against you. If the prosecutor believes you are willing to go to trial, and that you have strong defenses to the charges they have filed against you, then you will have a much better chance of achieving an outcome you can live with. A defendant can not be found to be guilty if the State’s evidence is shown to be unreliable or untrustworthy, if the jury is unconvinced due to the lack of evidence or there are conflicts in the evidence presented.

 

The 97 to 98 percent of cases that resolve voluntarily with a no contest or guilty plea has increased in great part because Florida Lawmakers have provided prosecutors with sentence enhancements that substantially increase the risk of going to trial.

Use the contact form here, or call 386-532-6000 to speak with an attorney today and schedule your free initial consultation.

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enhancementsStatistically, prosecutors only have to prove 2 or 3 percent of all their criminal cases. In other words, 97 to 98 percent of all cases get resolved with a voluntary plea by the Defendant. 97 to 98 percent of all criminal defendants are afraid to demand a jury trial because they perceive the risk is too great, they fear they will not receive a fair trial and/or they cannot find an experienced lawyer to defend them with a jury trial.

 

Mr. Sherman welcomes the opportunity to speak with you in order to help you understand the benefit of preparing for jury trial. The most effective way to negotiate a favorable resolution of your case is by finding evidence that challenges the strength of the State’s allegations against you. If the prosecutor believes you are willing to go to trial, and that you have strong defenses to the charges they have filed against you, then you will have a much better chance of achieving an outcome you can live with. A defendant can be found not guilty if the State’s evidence is shown to be unreliable or untrustworthy, if the jury is unconvinced due to the lack of evidence or there are conflicts in the evidence presented.

Use the contact form here, or call 386-532-6000 to speak with a lawyer today and schedule your free initial consultation.​​

The 97 to 98 percent of cases that resolve voluntarily with a no contest or guilty plea is helped in great part because Florida Lawmakers have provided prosecutors with sentence enhancements that substantially increase the risk of going to trial.

Florida’s 10-20-LIFE Law:

There are many twists and turns that can affect the outcome of your case when the prosecutor decides to use the 10-20-Life statute against you. Let me use my knowledge of Florida Law and the unique facts of your case to help you avoid being prosecuted under the 10-20-Life Statute.

 

Pursuant to Florida Statute 775.087, anyone, including those with no prior criminal arrests, who commits one of the following crimes is subject to a minimum jail sentence if a firearm is used during the commission of said crime:

 

  • If you commit Murder, Robbery, Burglary, Arson, Home Invasion Robbery, Sexual Battery, Aggravated Battery, Kidnapping, Escape, Aggravated Assault, Aircraft Piracy, Aggravated Abuse of an Elderly Person or Disabled Adult, Unlawful Throwing, Placing, or Discharging of a Destructive Device or Bomb, Trafficking in Illegal Drugs, Carjacking, Aggravated Stalking, and Possession of Firearm by Convicted Felon, and;
  • If you possess a firearm or destructive device while committing one of the above listed crimes, you are facing a minimum sentence of 10 years in prison.
  • If you fire a firearm or destructive device while committing one of the above listed crimes, you face a minimum sentence of 20 years in prison.
  • If you fire the firearm or destructive device and someone is injured or killed while committing one of the above listed crimes, you face a mandatory LIFE sentence in prison.

 

What else you need to know about Florida’s gun laws:

The sentencing judge must impose a minimum three-year term if the defendant is convicted for aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a felon, or burglary of a conveyance (i.e., car, boat, or other vessel).

 

If the firearm used in the felony is a semiautomatic with a high-capacity box magazine or a machine gun, the minimum mandatory prison terms are 15 years, 20 years, and 25 years to life.

 

The three-year minimum sentence provision for certain crimes does not apply in cases involving these firearms. Also, the enhanced penalties for convictions involving these firearms do not apply if the underlying crime was possession of a firearm by a felon.

 

Courts must impose the minimum sentence regardless of any mitigating circumstance. No part of the sentence may be suspended, deferred, or withheld, and defendants are not eligible for any discretionary early release, other than pardon or clemency, or conditional medical release, before serving the minimum sentence.

 

REPEAT OFFENDER ENHANCERS:

Florida lawmakers have decided to increase criminal prison sentences for repeat offenders by subjecting them to much longer periods of incarceration. The following information is provided to help you understand the sentencing options that may be available to the prosecutor in your case.

 

Under the sentence enhancement system, the criteria for repeat offenders depends upon the offender’s classification. There are four specific classifications of repeat offenders and they are as follows:

 

Habitual Felony Offender

A person can be classified as a habitual felony offender when:

  1. The offender has been convicted of (2) or more felonies or other qualified offenses.
  2. The felony that the offender is currently being sentenced for was committed while the offender was in prison for a prior felony or other qualifying criminal offense within five years of the prior felony or offense, or within five years of being released from prison, probation or other form of court ordered supervision (i.e. community control).
  3. If the current felony the offender is being sentenced for and one of his or her two prior convictions do not fall under § 893.13 Florida Statute (Purchase or possession of a controlled substance).

 

Habitual Violent Felony Offender

An offender designated as a Habitual Violent Felony Offender is subject to double the statutory maximum for the charged offense. For example, a 2nd degree felony which carries a maximum of 15 years prison, can result in a 30 year sentence if he or she qualifies as a Habitual Violent Felony Offender and the sentencing judge elects to impose the 30 year sentence.

 

Under §775.084 a person is classified as a violent felony offender when:

 

The offender has a prior, separate conviction for a felony, attempted felony, or conspiracy to commit a felony, and of or more of these convictions were for any of the following:

 

Aggravated Assault, Aggravated Child Abuse, Aggravated Abuse of the Elderly or Disabled, Aggravated Manslaughter of the Elderly or Disabled, Aggravated Manslaughter of a Child, Aggravated Battery, Aggravated Stalking, Armed Burglary, Arson, Kidnapping, Murder, Manslaughter, Robbery, Sexual Battery, Throwing, Placing, or Discharging a Destructive Device.

 

Additionally, the current felony to be sentenced is an enumerated offense and was committed while the offender was serving a sentence for a conviction for any of the enumerated offenses, within the previous five years of the date of the conviction or release from jail or supervision for the prior offense.

 

Violent Career Criminal

The offender is eligible for gain time. Life felony – they must spend life in prison. 1st Degree VCC: Life in prison. 2nd Degree VCC: Up to 40 years in prison and the offender is ineligible for early release during the first 30 years of their sentence. 3rd Degree VCC: Up to 15 years in prison and the offender is ineligible for early release during the first 10 years of their sentence.

 

In order to be classified as a violent career criminal, the offender must have previously been convicted as an adult three or more times for an offense in Florida or another qualifying offense that is:

  1. Aggravated Abuse of an Elderly Person or Disabled
  2. Aggravated Child Abuse
  3. Aggravated Stalking
  4. Escape
  5. Felony Use or Possession of a Firearm
  6. Any Forcible Felony
  7. Lewd and Lascivious Conduct, Battery, Molestation

 

The offender has been previously incarcerated in federal prison, and the felony to be sentenced for was an enumerated offense, and was committed on or after October 1, 1995, and a) while serving his or her sentence for the conviction, or b) within five years from the date of the conviction or within five years of the release from a prison sentence, probation, control release, condition release, parole, or court-ordered or lawfully imposed supervision imposed as a prior conviction for an enumerated felony.

 

Prison Releasee Reoffender

For the PRR, sentencing is mandatory. The PRR is ineligible for gain time. If they were convicted of a Life Felony – the offender must serve 100% of their sentence, and they are ineligible for an early release. 1st Degree PRR: Up to 30 years in prison, the offender must serve 100% of their sentence, and they are ineligible for early release. 2nd Degree PRR: Up to 15 years in prison, the offender must serve 100% of their sentence and they are ineligible for early release. 3rd Degree PRR: Up to 5 years in prison, the offender must serve 100% of the sentence, and they are ineligible for early release.

 

In order for an offender to be classified as a prison release reoffender, two factors must be present:

 

While the offender was serving their sentence of imprisonment, while they were on escape status, or within three years of release from prison the offender must have committed or attempted to commit the following offenses:

  • Aggravated Assault
  • Aggravated Battery
  • Aggravated Stalking
  • Aircraft Piracy
  • Armed Burglary
  • Arson
  • Burglary of an Occupied Structure or Domicile
  • Carjacking
  • Home Invasion
  • Kidnapping
  • Manslaughter
  • Murder
  • Robbery
  • Sexual Battery
  • Throwing, Placing or Discharging a Destructive Device
  • Treason
  • Any other felony using the threat of physical violence
  • Any §790.07, §800.03, or §827.071 felony

Call the Orange City office for a free consultation 386-532-6000