All About Prison Releasee Reoffender(PRR) In Florida

June 24, 2024 Criminal Defense, Violent Crimes

prison inmate

Prison releasee reoffender (PRR) in Florida is really bad for anyone who qualifies – in every sense of the word. In Florida, criminal penalties are enhanced when someone reoffends after having committed enumerated statutory violations (Florida Statutes Section 775.082 9(a)(1)) within three years of having been released from the Florida Department of Corrections or another facility covered under the statute. Upon the state attorney seeking and proving qualification for PRR, the qualifying person cannot be sentenced under the sentencing guidelines of the Florida Criminal Punishment Code. Instead, they receive the maximum statutory sentence for the offense, with the court having no discretion.   

But there is hope. Read to the end to see where hope is possible in avoiding PRR.

You don’t want any part of PRR. Not in any way, shape, or form. It’s bad. PRR is the “Captain Nasty” of criminal punishment in Florida. With all that said, let’s dive into the statute. 

PRR in Florida: Florida Statutes Section 775.082 9(a)(1)

Under Florida law, a “prison releasee reoffender” is a defendant who recommits or attempts to recommit a variety of crimes. These include:

Or any felony violation of the following Florida State Statutes:

  • F.S.S. 790.07 (Persons engaged in criminal offense, having weapons)
  • F.S.S. 800.04 (Lewd or lascivious offenses committed upon or in the presence of persons less than 16 years of age)
  • F.S.S. 827.03 (Abuse, aggravated abuse, and neglect of a child)
  • F.S.S. 827.071 (Sexual performance by a child)
  • F.S.S. 847.0135(5) (Computer pornography offenses)

The reoffense or attempted reoffense must have occurred within three years after being released from a state correctional facility operated by the Department of Corrections, or:

  • A facility operated by a private vendor
  • A county detention facility following incarceration for an offense for which the sentence pronounced was a prison sentence, or;
  • A correctional institution of another state, the District of Columbia, the United States, any possession or territory of the United States, or foreign jurisdiction following incarceration for an offense for which the sentence is punishable by more than 1 year in Florida.

The “prison releasee reoffender” program also covers any defendant who commits or attempts to commit any listed offense while that defendant was serving a prison sentence or on escape status from any of the above.

Here Comes The Nasty Part: Punishment

If the state attorney determines that a defendant qualifies a prison releasee reoffender, the state attorney may seek to have the court sentence the defendant accordingly. If a state attorney can establish by a preponderance of the evidence that a defendant is a prison releasee reoffender as defined in this section, the defendant is not eligible for sentencing under the Florida Criminal Punishment Code sentencing guidelines. They must be sentenced as follows:

  • For a felony punishable by life, by a term of imprisonment for life;
  • For a felony of the first degree, by a term of imprisonment of 30 years;
  • For a felony of the second degree, by a term of imprisonment of 15 years; and 
  • For a felony of the third degree, by a term of imprisonment of 5 years

A person sentenced for life shall be released only by expiration of sentence – they will never be eligible for parole, controlled release, or any form of early release whatsoever. Anyone sentenced for a life felony under Florida Statutes Section 775.082 9(a)(1) as a PRR must serve 100 percent of the court-imposed sentence. That means the entirety of their natural life.  

The only way someone qualifying under PRR leaves prison under this statute is “feet-first” in a box. It’s bad. Nobody wants any part of any punishment that’s a “feet-first in a box” punishment. It means the breath has left the body and only then can the individual be taken back out into the free world – they’ll never be able to take another breath outside of prison. PRR is bad – but never give up hope.

Hope still exists. Although very rare (like seeing Sasquatch rare), a state attorney has the power under the statute to give a plea or sentence less than the maximum. The state attorney must explain the sentence deviation in writing, and place the explanation in the case file maintained by the state attorney. 

We at the Pumphrey Law Firm have successfully provided that hope and realization of the goal of avoiding PRR. Every case is different – and it takes commitment, persistence, and the right circumstances with everyone including the client and family working as a team with experts to achieve this goal of avoiding the PRR punishments. It takes financial resources to support an “all hands on deck” approach to realize the goal of avoiding PRR, the “Captain Nasty” of punishments involving non-death penalty cases.

Don Pumphrey, Jr. is a Former Prosecutor, Former State Police Officer, Lifetime Member of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers; for almost 25 years as a private defense attorney who is Trusted, Experienced, Aggressive in Criminal Defense as a Trial Attorney, Criminal Lawyer, Criminal Defense Lawyer for the accused in Florida State Courts located in Tallahassee, Florida but handling cases throughout the State of Florida.

As a former prosecutor, former state police officer and a life member of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Don Pumphrey Jr. has observed that being arrested anywhere in Florida can be extremely stressful. Being charged and “formally charged” by information in Tallahassee or Leon County, Wakulla County, Jefferson County, Gadsden County, Quincy, Crawfordville, Florida State University, Florida State University Campus, Florida State University Student Code of Conduct, Tallahassee Community College, Florida A&M University, or facing first appearance in Leon County, can be life changing. Given the possibility of a lengthy jail or in some cases lengthy prison sentence and hefty financial penalties, it is important to contact an aggressive, trusted and experienced Tallahassee criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.

Criminal Defense in Tallahassee, FL

Don Pumphrey, Jr. and the Tallahassee criminal defense lawyers at Pumphrey Law have decades of experience fighting on behalf of clients and winning. Call Pumphrey Law now at (850) 681-7777 to learn more about what we can do for you. Our lawyers will be happy to provide you with a free consultation.

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