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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 117370
Experience:  Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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Hi- how are the "points" tallied up in the state of Florida

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Hi- how are the "points" tallied up in the state of Florida for an offender with a long criminal record? Each charge seems to have "points" that add up to a sum which determines a mandatory sentence, from my limited understanding. Can offenses from 25 years ago in another state count toward the overall points? Can charges that were dropped also count towards sending a person to prison? Public defender is acting like a prosecutor, what statutes can be researched to help in this matter? Thank you so much...
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

The FL Sentencing Scoresheet considers ONLY PAST CONVICTIONS. If you were not convicted of a felony or misdemeanor, then no points are assessed to those charges. Convictions for offenses committed more than 10 years before the date of the commission of the primary offense are not counted if you have not been convicted of any other crime for a period of 10 consecutive years from the most recent date of release from confinement, supervision, or other sanction, whichever is later, to the date of the commission of the primary offense. If a charge was dismissed, it would not count towards your points.

Here is the FL manual on the sentencing scoresheet which pretty clearly explains how the points are calculated.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you so much. I'm extremely grateful for your prompt and very helpful reply. What would you recommend is the best way to approach an unsympathetic Pub Def. who clearly isn't interested in correcting mistakes on the score sheet? The accused is in Pinellas Co jail now and is going to pre-trial Monday. The points would result in 5 years prison time. The current (primary?) offense is felony possession of a trace of a controlled substance, but there were several other people in the house present to whom the contraband belonged, but he is the accused because of his record. The arresting cop did a substance test NOT in the presence of the accused and also HIPPA laws may have been violated when a hospital revealed to police that the defendant was on drugs- even though they were prescribed. I'm trying to help but have no cash (besides your small fee) to hire an atty. Any advise you have is most appreciated. I'm so grateful for anything I can use to help him. Thank you, Helen
Thank you for your response.

It is the duty of the public defender to properly represent their client, if this PD is not doing so, you can speak to the PD supervisor about the improper score sheet. Also, if there is any reasonable doubt that these drugs belong to the defendant, then the defendant should not take a plea and should go to trial. Also, you can take the manual I provided to the supervisor and show them the score is not correct.

The HIPAA laws have an exemption for law enforcement investigations. However, if there was a violation the violation would be on the hospital and not the police and you can file a complaint with the US Department of Health and Hospitals about that as they are the only agency who can investigate and sanction violations as there is no private right of action under HIPAA.
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