Felony Crimes in Florida
If you have been charged with a felony offense, you are probably wondering:
Felony cases are the most complicated and serious crimes in Florida. The government saves its most experienced and decorated prosecutors to handle felony cases.
It is important that you retain an attorney who has the experience and knowledge to challenge these prosecutors.
What is a Felony
Felony offenses can only be handled by circuit court judges and are punishable by the possibility of more than one-year in prison.
Examples of felonies are:
- Aggravated Assault,
- Aggravated Battery,
- Battery on Law Enforcement Officer,
- Child Abuse,
- Drug Possession (Except Marijuana),
- Felony Battery,
- Grand Theft,
- Resisting Officer with Violence,
- Sex Crimes, including
- The list goes on...
Depending on the degree of the felony you are charged with, the possible penalties are as follows:
- Third Degree Felony
- A third degree felony is punishable by up to five years in prison, five years probation, and a $5,000 fine.
- Second Degree Felony
- A second-degree felony is punishable by up to fifteen years in prison, fifteen years probation, and a $10,000 fine.
- First Degree Felony
- A first-degree felony is punishable by up to thirty years in prison, thirty years probation, and a $10,000 fine.
- Life Felony
- A life felony is punishable by life in prison without the possibility of parole, or probation for the remainder of your life, and a $15,000 fine.
- Capital Felony
- A capital felony is punishable by death or life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Florida's Criminal Punishment Code
Felony offenses are sentenced pursuant to Florida's criminal punishment code ("CPC"), commonly referred to as a score sheet
A felony is assigned a numerical value based on a ranking system set by the Florida legislature. The higher the ranking, the more points your CPC score sheet scores.
If you score more than 44 points, you are subject to a minimum term of imprisonment. If you score less than 44 points, a judge is not required to sentence you to prison, but may still do so.
In addition to the possibility of imprisonment, a felony conviction carries a number of collateral consequences:
- Loss of your Civil Rights,
- Ineligible to obtain State Licenses,
- Ineligible to hold public office,
- Ineligible for federal or state aid,
- Inability to get hired,
- Unable to rent an apartment, etc...
Even more frustrating, if you do find a job that you are not barred by law from taking, you may still not get hired because most insurance companies will not insure a felon.
Will I have a Criminal Record?
Having a felony criminal records is both embarrassing and disturbing and it may be possible to have your arrest record cleared at a later date by either:
However, the manner in which your felony is ultimately resolved may affect your eligibility to clear your record at a later date. For instance, even if Adjudication is Withheld; certain felonies are ineligible to ever be sealed or expunged after a plea.
Please review the sealing or expunging section for more information on the criteria for this process.
Contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Richard Hornsby
Facing a felony charge? Then contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Richard Hornsby for the criminal defense representation you deserve. The initial consultation is free and I am always available to advise you on the proper course of action to take.