New bills stress Florida’s aggressive stance against sex crimes
Florida officials have spent a great deal of time in the past year discussing the penalties that may be handed down if an individual is convicted of a sex crime. Several high-profile cases have led to concern that some of these offenders are not being properly rehabilitated prior to their release, leading to additional future crimes.
Legislation was recently passed that focused on sexually violent predators. The new law increased the state’s power to keep these offenders out of the community, with longer prison sentences for certain sex crimes. Mandatory prison sentences of 50 years could be handed down in some of these cases, which is a large increase over past penalties.
In addition to these laws, legislators have also passed a new bill concerning sex crimes committed by teachers and others working in schools. The bill, which received overwhelming support when it passed the House in a 107-8 vote, is focused on the amount of jail time these offenders receive. The crimes have been listed as more dangerous felony offenses, increasing the prison time that would accompany a conviction. The bill now heads to the Senate.
Critics have expressed some reservations about some of the people who could potentially be covered by this new law. For example, there may be individuals who volunteer with the school who are only 18 or 19 years old. They could become involved in a relationship with a high-school student, and find themselves subject to harsh penalties because they would technically be committing a crime.
These individuals would be required to register as sex offenders in the state. This would force these offenders to report to law enforcement every time that they moved to a different location, and they may also experience restrictions upon their employment. These requirements would last for several years after these individuals have completed their prison sentences.
The state continues to increase the potential penalties connected to certain sex offenses. If you learn that law enforcement is investigating you for a sex crime, you need to take immediate action to protect your rights. You need to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney before you meet with investigators.
These cases are often reported in the media, and the attention can result in significant problems for you in your everyday life. You need to be sure that you are taking steps to present an aggressive defense to these accusations. Failing to take action could result in a conviction, which may require you to have to register as a sex offender. Do not let prosecutors trick you into accepting a deal just to make the matter go away.