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“State of Emergency” Crimes

Did you know that some crimes are more serious when committed during a “state of emergency”?

On Monday, March 9, 2020, the Governor in Florida declared a state of emergency under Chapter 252, the “State Emergency Management Act” for every county in Florida because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

For some times of crimes committed during a state of emergency the penalties are more serious if the crime was committed within a county that was subject to a state of emergency and if the  perpetration of the crime was facilitated by conditions arising from the emergency.

For example, during this state of emergency, crimes for theft, robbery, and burglary are classified as one degree higher. For example, if you are charged with a grand theft in the third degree, the offense becomes a second degree felony when committed during a state of emergency.

Or if you are charged with burglary of an unoccupied structure during a state of emergency (BURG0021), the crime is charged as a second degree felony instead of a third degree felony.

Attorney for State of Emergency Crimes in Tampa, FL

If you were charged with a theft, burglary, robbery, or related crime during a state of emergency, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Sammis Law Firm.

After an arrest for a crime charged under Section 812.014 for “Theft, Robbery and Related Crimes” committed during a state of emergency, contact us.

Call 813-250-0500.

Crimes Facilitated by Conditions Arising in an Emergency

Consider the fact that pursuant to Section 812.014 for “Theft, Robbery and Related Crimes” the statute provides, in part:

…if the [crime is committed] within a county that is subject to a state of emergency declared by the Governor under chapter 252, the [crime] is committed after the declaration of emergency is made, and the perpetration of the [crime] is facilitated by conditions arising from the emergency, the [crime is classified as one degree higher].

As used in this paragraph, the term “conditions arising from the emergency” means civil unrest, power outages, curfews, voluntary or mandatory evacuations, or a reduction in the presence of or response time for first responders or homeland security personnel.

For purposes of sentencing under chapter 921, a felony offense that is reclassified under this paragraph is ranked one level above the ranking under s. 921.0022 or s. 921.0023 of the offense committed.

This article was last updated on Wednesday, March 22, 2020.

 

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