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Prison Term Policy Essay

1034 words - 4 pages

Prison Term Policy RecommendationIn this paper I have to provide a recommendation on a new bill that will double the maximum prison sentence for armed robbery. This paper will explain my reasoning why doubling the maximum prison sentence for armed robbery will or will not do much good. The first thing I will address is what my state's maximum prison sentence is for armed robbery and some reasons why the prison sentence could be less or more.Armed robbery is a first degree felony in Florida and carries a statutory maximum sentence of 30 years in prison. That being said, the actual sentence will depend on a number of factors, including number of prior convictions and the specifics of the offense: whether or not there is more than one charge, whether or not anyone was injured and if so how badly, whether it was drug-related, etc. Assuming no other aggravating factors, the absolute minimum a person convicted for armed robbery can be sentenced is 34.5 months in prison, or a little under three years. If the convict used a semi-automatic firearm in the commission of the robbery, that jumps to 48 months, or four years."In 1998, criminals in Florida used guns to commit 31,643 violent felonies, including 13,937 armed robberies. That year, the mandatory punishment for using a gun to commit a violent felony was only three years in prison. During his campaign for Governor in 1998, Jeb Bush proposed the toughest gun-crime law in the nation: 10-20-LIFE. Under 10-20-LIFE, a felon who used a gun to commit a crime like armed robbery would face at least 10 years in state prison. The 1999 Florida Legislature passed sweeping legislation that provides for enhanced minimum mandatory prison terms for offenders who commit crimes with guns" (Florida Department of Corrections 2008).Some people think that it would be a great idea if the state legislature would pass a bill that would double the maximum prison sentence for armed robbery. Many people, on the other hand, do not think that doubling the maximum prison sentence for armed robbery is not worth the trouble. The question is will maximizing the prison sentence for armed robberies deter criminals from committing the crime. The answer is no, it wouldn't have any deterrent impact. After all, if you thought you were going to get caught, you would not do the crime, right? The only reduction would be that repeat offenders aren't out on the streets for a while.Since the maximum sentence in the state of Florida is 30 years, why should the state legislation want to pass a bill to double the maximum sentence? The reasoning is simple. The state legislation wants to decrease the amount of armed robberies that are committed. The state legislation thinks that by doubling the maximum sentence that the criminals will stop. That is not the case. The thing is, most armed robbers do not think that they will get caught. Saying that raising the maximum prison sentence is not going to decrease the amount of armed...

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