Florida is one of 28 states that have habitual offender laws, also known as three-strikes laws. These laws are implemented as part of the United States Justice Department’s Anti-Violence Strategy and radically increase the severity of punishment for anyone convicted of multiple serious crimes.
If you are facing a significant criminal charge in Florida, you will need help defending your rights, especially if you have been convicted of a serious crime in the past. Do not attempt to face the severe or even lifelong penalties of Florida’s three-strikes law alone. Work with a criminal defense lawyer you know will be diligent in protecting your rights. Criminal Defense Attorney Brian Gabriel of The Law Office of Gabriel & Gabriel has dedicated his career to defending the rights of people accused of crimes for over 30 years and will handle your case using all the knowledge and skill developed over the span of his career.
What Types of Crimes Are Subject to Florida’s Three Strikes Law?
Florida’s three strikes law is commonly referred to as the 10-20-Life law. Outlined in Florida Statute 775.087, the law states that felony convictions must come with a minimum sentence of 10 years, 20 years, 25 years, or life in prison for certain crimes. The crimes subject to Florida’s three strikes law are violent offenses and include the following:
- Aggravated battery
- Aggravated child abuse
- Aggravated stalking
- Home invasion robbery
- Sexual battery
In order for an accused criminal to be subjected to the elevated penalties of Florida’s three strikes law, they must first be identified as a habitual offender. In Florida, a habitual offender is someone who meets the following criteria:
- They have been convicted of two or more violent felonies
- Their violent felony convictions must be at least two separate instances
- They are currently facing charges for a violent felony crime
- The crime they are currently facing charges for must have occurred within five years of serving time for a previous felony conviction
- They have not been pardoned for a violent felony crime in the past
Once the above elements have been proven, the individual will be labeled as a habitual offender and the judge will be obligated to allocate the mandatory minimum sentence. Suppose you have been accused of any of the crimes subject to Florida’s three strikes law. In that case, you will need qualified legal representation to defend your case as any strike against you will put you another step closer to a life behind bars.
Fight to Keep a Strike Off Your Record with a Skilled Florida Criminal Defense Attorney
The penalties that come with violent felony convictions are severe in Florida, so it is imperative that you work with a skilled criminal defense attorney if you have been arrested for any violent felony crime. Whether this is your first time facing a criminal charge or your third, you can count on Criminal Defense Attorney Brian Gabriel to do everything in his power to protect your rights. Mr. Gabriel can conduct a thorough evaluation of your situation and establish the most effective defense strategy to benefit your case.