Florida’s repeat offender law

On Behalf of | Nov 20, 2021 | Felonies

If you have a criminal record, you may benefit from learning more about the repeat offender laws in Florida. The state has laws allowing sentencing enhancements for habitual felony offenders and habitual violent felony offenders. A statute increases the maximum penalties available and imposes minimum mandatory terms for habitual violent felony offenders.

Habitual felony offenders

The state defines a habitual felony offender as a defendant who may receive an extended prison term if they’ve convicted two or more felonies in Florida or any other state. The statute also applies if the current offense was committed while the defendant was incarcerated for a felony, under felony supervision, or if it’s within five years of a felony conviction or state prison release. Felonies for possession or purchase of controlled substances don’t qualify under this statute.

Habitual violent felony offenders

Habitual violent felony offenders are defined as defendants who’ve been convicted for an offense, attempt, or conspiracy to commit arson, sexual battery, robber, kidnapping, and other violent offenses listed in the statute. The same provisions that apply to habitual felony offenders apply to habitual violent felony offenders. The state is required to serve notice to the defendant if these enhanced penalties are going to be invoked.

Sentencing repeat offenders in court

The enhanced penalties for habitual felony offenders upgrade third-degree felony sentencing from 5 years to 10 years, a second-degree from 15 years to 30 years, and a first-degree from 30 years to life. For habitual violent felony offenders, the third-degree has a 5-year minimum sentence, the second-degree has a 10-year minimum and a first-degree life sentence has a 15-year minimum mandatory sentence.


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