Florida Senate - 2013                                     SB 420
       By Senator Sachs
       34-00771-13                                            2013420__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to sentencing for controlled substance
    3         violations; amending s. 893.135, F.S.; providing for
    4         an exception to mandatory minimum sentencing
    5         requirements for certain violators of specified
    6         controlled substance provisions; specifying criteria
    7         to qualify for an exception; providing criteria that
    8         may be considered by a court in departing for the
    9         mandatory minimum term of imprisonment; requiring a
   10         court to make certain statements if it departs from
   11         the mandatory minimum term of imprisonment; providing
   12         an effective date.
   14  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   16         Section 1. Subsection (8) is added to section 893.135,
   17  Florida Statutes, to read:
   18         893.135 Trafficking; mandatory sentences; suspension or
   19  reduction of sentences; conspiracy to engage in trafficking.—
   20         (8)(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if a
   21  defendant has been convicted of a violation of paragraph (1)(c)
   22  which involves possession of a mixture that is a prescription
   23  drug as defined in s. 499.003, the state attorney, defendant, or
   24  counsel representing the defendant may move the sentencing court
   25  to depart from the mandatory minimum term of imprisonment
   26  applicable to that violation.
   27         (b) The sentencing court may grant a motion under this
   28  subsection if the court finds that the following criteria are
   29  met:
   30         1. The defendant’s violation of paragraph (1)(c) did not
   31  involve the use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical
   32  force against another person.
   33         2. The defendant’s violation of paragraph (1)(c) did not
   34  result in serious bodily injury to another person or the
   35  disfigurement or death of another person.
   36         3. In the commission of the offense in violation of
   37  paragraph (1)(c), the defendant was not armed with, did not
   38  threaten to use or display, and did not represent by word or
   39  conduct that he or she possessed a firearm, deadly weapon, or
   40  dangerous instrument.
   41         4. The defendant has not previously been convicted of a
   42  felony.
   43         5. The provisions of this subsection have not been
   44  previously invoked.
   45         (c) When departing from the mandatory minimum term of
   46  imprisonment, the sentencing court may consider any facts that
   47  the court considers relevant, including, but not limited to:
   48         1. The criteria listed in paragraph (b).
   49         2. The sentencing report and any evidence admitted in a
   50  previous sentencing proceeding.
   51         3. The defendant’s record of arrests.
   52         4. Any other evidence of allegations of unlawful conduct or
   53  the use of violence by the defendant.
   54         5. The defendant’s family ties, length of residence in the
   55  community, employment history, and mental condition.
   56         6. The likelihood that an alternative sentence will produce
   57  the same deterrent effect, rehabilitate the defendant, and
   58  prevent or delay recidivism to an equal or greater extent than
   59  imposition of the mandatory minimum term of imprisonment.
   60         7. The likelihood that the defendant will engage again in a
   61  criminal course of conduct.
   62         (d) If the sentencing court grants the motion, the court
   63  shall state in open court at the time of sentencing the specific
   64  reasons for imposing the sentence and for not imposing the
   65  mandatory minimum term of imprisonment.
   66         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2013.