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Florida’s 10/20/Life Gun Law

Posted in Blog on March 11th, 2013

It seems that every time I walk into a convenience store I see a sign with a gun saying 10/20/Life.  In Florida, gun crimes are prosecuted to the fullest extend of the law.   Florida’s 10-20-Life law imposes mandatory minimum sentences for defendant who use guns during the commission of certain crimes.  This law covers the following offenses:

  • Aggravated Assault with a gun – mandatory minimum 3 year prison sentence
  • Felon in possession of a gun – mandatory minimum 3 year prison sentence
  • Pulling a gun in the commission of a crime – mandatory minimum 10 year sentence
  • Firing a gun during the commission of a crime – mandatory minimum 20 year sentence
  • Injuring or killing another person in the commission of a crime, by discharging a firearm – 25 years to life in state prison

These sentences are the minimum mandatory sentence that will be imposed upon conviction, meaning that the court can not impose a lesser sentence for the charged offense. The court still has discretion to impose a sentence up to the statutory maximum allowed for the particular offense. The Florida Legislature has mandated that anyone convicted of a 10/20/LIFE crime is ineligible to get a “withhold adjudication.”

As with any other charge, you are presumed innocent.  The State is required to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  Florida’s 10-20-LIFE law carries serious penalties, but that doesn’t mean that everyone who is charged under the law is ultimately sentenced under the law.  When the stakes are this high, you need a relentless and aggressive criminal defense attorney on your side.  You need an attorney who knows the law and who will be able to use the law to protect your rights and freedom.