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Minimum Sentences For Domestic Violence Convictions

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Florida law prescribes for mandatory minimum sentencing if convicted (adjudicated guilty) of a domestic violence offense.

Florida law specifically provides that, "if a person is adjudicated guilty If a person is adjudicated guilty of a crime of domestic violence, as defined in s. 741.28, and the person has intentionally caused bodily harm to another person, the court shall order the person to serve a minimum of 5 days in the county jail as part of the sentence imposed."

The judge may also impose probation and other conditions.

Additionally, Florida law states that, "If a person is found guilty of, has had adjudication withheld on, or has pled nolo contendere to a crime of domestic violence, as defined in s. 741.28, that person shall be ordered by the court to a minimum term of 1 year’s probation and the court shall order that the defendant attend a batterers’ intervention program as a condition of probation. The court must impose the condition of the batterers’ intervention program for a defendant under this section, but the court, in its discretion, may determine not to impose the condition if it states on the record why a batterers’ intervention program might be inappropriate."

In other words, the court must sentence you to 5 days in jail if convicted of a domestic violence crime where it is alleged that injury was intentionally inflicted upon the alleged victim. The court must also - but may opt not to for reasons stated on the record - sentence the accused to 1 year of probation with batterers' intervention.

Eric Matheny is a domestic violence attorney serving Miami-Dade and Broward.