Stephen G. Cobb - Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer

What Are The Sentencing Guidelines For Assault And Battery Cases?


Disclaimer: This article is in response to questions frequently asked of Mr. Cobb and is an unedited dictation transcript. Just like talk to text on your smartphone, there may be misspelled words or sentence fragments.

With charges that are second degree misdemeanors like assault the maximum penalty is 60 days in jail and the maximum probationary period is 6 months of reporting probation. A sentence like that can also be a mixed sentence, in that someone can get, for example, 6 months of probation with a special condition of 10, 20 or 30 days in jail. With a misdemeanor battery they can get up to a year in jail and up to 12 months of reporting probation. Again, there can be a mixed sentence. For example, someone may be found guilty and have a misdemeanor conviction, be sentenced to a year of probation and then have a special provision of 60 days in the county jail as a special condition of probation.

In this example, I referenced that the person was found guilty, the way the law works adjudication of guilt can be withheld meaning that there is no conviction, they are still sentenced to a year of probation and they still get 60 or 90 days in jail as a special condition of probation. Those are the types of sentences that can happen in misdemeanor cases. The moment you start attaching words like felony in front of battery or aggravated in front of assault, the penalties skyrocket. The floor or bottom for these penalties in terms of maximum sentencing is 5 years in prison in the case of a 3rd degree felony, 60 months. The person could also be sentenced to up to 5 years of probation in certain circumstances but if you are talking about an aggravated battery, the minimum sentence is a prison sentence unless a lawful departure ground under rule 3.992b is found and if you are talking about what is sadly considered the most successful form of battery, murder, the penalty can range all the way up to life in prison or even the death penalty because Florida is a death penalty state.

If the offense is domestic in nature then you have a whole host of other collateral consequences in addition to the enhanced collateral consequences of a felony conviction. If someone has a felony conviction, when their civic rights are restored, their gun rights are not restored. When someone has a felony conviction for a domestic variant of assault or battery, then what happens is their gun rights can never be restored. When you start adding things like domestic to a particular charge or you start adding words like felony or aggravated, the penalties skyrocket and here is one that people don’t think of very often and that is sex offender designation and registration.

If someone is charged and convicted of a sexual battery in the familial context, one of those areas under Chapter 741 which governs domestic relations and domestic violence generally, that would be considered both a domestic violence case on top of the criminal charge and obviously it’s a sexual offense case. So you have scenarios where someone could have imprisonment on a sexual offense case, they would have the collateral consequences of sex offender designation and registration, they would have the collateral consequences of a felony conviction and they would have the collateral consequences of a domestic violence and a sex offense conviction.

Disclaimer: This article is in response to questions frequently asked of Mr. Cobb and is an unedited dictation transcript. Just like talk to text on your smartphone, there may be misspelled words or sentence fragments.

For more information on Sentencing Guidelines For Assault Cases, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (850) 466-1522 today.

Stephen G. Cobb, Esq.

Get your questions answered - call me for your free, 20 min phone consultation (850) 466-1522

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