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HB 407 — Criminal Gang Prevention

by Rep. Ingram and others (SB 788 by Senators Abruzzo and Evers)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Criminal Justice Committee (CJ)

The legislation does the following to enhance criminal gang intervention and prevention:

  • Increases the misdemeanor criminal penalties for specified trespassing offenses in school safety zones by a person convicted of gang-related offenses (becomes a first instead of a second degree misdemeanor);
  • Increases the felony criminal penalties for intentionally causing, encouraging, soliciting, or recruiting a person under 13 years of age to become a gang member (becomes a second instead of a third degree felony, except if it is a second or subsequent recruiting conviction, it becomes a first degree felony);
  • Authorizes a county or municipal detention facility to designate a person to be responsible for assessing whether an inmate is a criminal gang member or associate and if so, report it to the arresting law enforcement agency; and
  • Amends the criminal gang multiplier in s. 921.0024, F.S., so that the multiplier will be able to be applied with a finding by the judge (rather than the jury) that the defendant committed the offense for the purpose of benefitting, promoting, or furthering the interests of a criminal gang in instances where the lowest permissible sentence does not exceed the statutory maximum sentence for the offense.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect October 1, 2013.

Vote: Senate 38-0; House 116-2