Florida’s New Law On Mandatory Minimum Sentencing

In July, a new law was passed that has significant implications for anyone who has been arrested for a crime in which mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines would be in effect.

Mandatory Minimum SentencingThis specifically relates to mandatory minimum sentences for aggravated assault. This could have significant consequences for you if you have recently been arrested for or convicted of assault in Florida. It is essential to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney in Florida as soon as possible after you have been accused in order to fully understand your rights.

The laws surrounding not just assault but other types of criminal cases can be extremely complex and confusing. After being arrested and accused of a crime, the experience can be overwhelming for someone who is not sure what to expect. It is strongly recommended that you exercise your rights to remain silent and consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible.

Police officers interrogating you may wish to give you the impression that all hope is lost and that there is nothing you can do to help your case. This is because they are trying to encourage you to cooperate with them. But it is often not in your best interests to cooperate with the police officers who may simply be trying to glean more information from you.

Although they may promise you that speaking to them will make your life easier, this is not always the case. The only person who can truly help you in this situation is an experienced Florida criminal defense attorney.

Whether you have been accused of assault or any other crime in the state of Florida, you need an attorney who understands the full extent of the law and how to protect you within it.

Developing a defense strategy as soon as possible and exploring all possible avenues for a meaningful defense on your behalf can give you a great deal of peace of mind and also increase the chances of your success.

What the New Law Says

Aggravated assault is now no longer included on the list of gun associated crimes that come with an automatic mandatory minimum prison sentence of 2 decades or 20 years, if either one of the following situations applies:

  • The individual possessed a semiautomatic firearm during the commission of the offense and a high capacity detachable box magazine or a machine gun.
  • The convicted individual possessed a destructive device/ firearm while committing an offense.

The new law is one example of an increasing shift away from mandatory minimum sentencing laws which have been viewed by many experts in the field as leaving unjust penalties for those who have suffered.

The 10-20 life law was on the books as a result of a series of gun related crimes in the 1990s. Judges were given very little to no discretion when it came to sentencing in certain crimes.

This means that they were responsible for handing down 10 year minimum sentences to any defendants who displayed a gun during an assault commission and 20 year sentences in the event that the gun was fired while a crime was being committed.

This even included situations where a homeowner might have fired a warning shot from their gun not at an individual. Unfortunately, this was seen as a very arbitrary situation that removed the discretion from the judges itself. Florida’s harsh minimum sentencing laws have led to many women and men being sent to prison for long periods of time even though they have committed or plead guilty to non-serious felonies.

Get in Touch with Miami Criminal Defense Attorney Today

Being accused of any crime, including misdemeanors, is a serious matter. Don’t wait to request an attorney. A lawyer can help you figure out the appropriate next steps to protect yourself during this critical time. Exercise your right to remain silent in the interim and wait until you have a chance to talk directly with your lawyer.

The new law will help to ensure fairer sentences but it is still important to ensure that you have someone representing your best interests as soon as possible after you have been accused of a crime. Do not hesitate to take your future seriously. Reach out to a knowledgeable Florida criminal defense attorney as soon as possible after you have been accused.

What seven things to do to not make your arrest worse: https://thehansenlawfirm.com/2016/11/15/seven-things-to-keep-in-mind-while-getting-arrested-miami/

Author: M. G. Hansen

Marcia Giordano Hansen has been practicing law for almost 20 years. During this time, she has worked for the government at the Miami Dade Public Defender’s office representing indigent clients accused for state criminal offense; for an insurance defense firm wherein she represented doctors sued for medical malpractice and entities sued for negligence; and for a private white collar criminal defense firm practicing white collar crime defending individuals accused of social security fraud, Medicare fraud, drug trafficking and other federal crimes. Her wide range of knowledge in these different areas of law, coupled with the teachings of some of the most well respected legal minds in the country gives her a unique skill set which has benefited all of her clients resulting in victory and success in each case she has handled. Mrs. Hansen, in her own practice, has handled criminal defense cases, personal injury cases and real estate disputes. She speaks Spanish, French and is proficient in Italian which enables her to represent clients from all over the world. She is dedicated to the growth and success of Hansen & Taylor and prides herself in giving VIP treatment to each and every client. Marcia lives in Coral Gables with her husband and daughter. She is an avid sports fan, an animal lover and political junkie. She is also a supporter and member of the Board of Executive Relations for the Special Olympics of Miami, an organization dedicated to the well being of children and adults with disabilities.

What Past Clients Say

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I met with several attorneys and I didn’t feel comfortable with any. Marcia walked me through the process and explained everything to me in detail. She was clear and very communicative throughout the ordeal. I recommend Marcia to anyone going through any type of criminal / legal matters.

Jose Martinez 5 March 4, 2019

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The Hansen Law Firm is a reliable law firm that I absolutely recommend. Marcia Hansen is an experienced, smart lawyer who uses a user friendly portal, which I can access anytime and see any updates regarding my case. She is also always available and quick to respond with any questions I may have.

Diego Fernandez 5 March 4, 2019

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Marcia was always available to assist me with my concerns. She laid out a strategy that resulted in to best possible outcome for our team.

kevin 5 March 4, 2019

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Marcia is a class act!!! I approached her when my cousin ran into trouble. He was facing 12 years of jail time. After her very thorough review of the case (expert witnesses, speaking with the prosecution, review of the evidence), he was released on time served with 2 years of house arrest. Needless to say, she is a true professional. Working with an experienced criminal defense attorney who has a heart is a rarity. She encompasses both. She is hardcore and sweet. I highly recommend her services. Praise God that my cousin has his life back on track and is making very sound decisions. He simply needed a second chance. Since then, Marcia has helped some of my clients who were erroneously being investigated. The client recently told me her fee was the best money he’s ever spent. He’s in the clear and his family can sleep at night. God bless her!!! She is the best.

S Berm 5 March 4, 2019

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Excellent experience with Marcia Hansen ,and the best results for our family ,we are so grateful for her work and kindness with us . I will recommend Marcia 100% .Thanks The Hansen Law Firm

KAB Badell 5 March 4, 2019


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