When a person intentionally and unlawfully takes another person’s vehicle via force, assault, violence or threat, they are considered guilty of the crime of carjacking. Penalties are increased when a firearm is used during the commission of the crime.

In the state of Florida, carjacking is a felony of the first degree. It is assigned as a Level 7 offense under the Criminal Punishment Code. Any person who is convicted of carjacking will receive a minimum of 21 months in prison, assuming there are no grounds for a downward departure sentence.

A judge can also impose any combination of the following:

  • No more than 30 years in prison
  • No more than 30 years of probation
  • No more than $10,000 in fine

When a weapon is used during a carjacking, the crime’s penalties are increased dramatically. A person may be sentenced to life in prison, and the offense is assigned a Level 9 under the Criminal Punishment Code. This means that a judge must impose a sentence of no less than 48 months in prison.

If a person uses a weapon during the carjacking, and is not merely an unarmed accomplice, they are subject to the 10/20/Life statute. The person would receive one of the following mandatory prison sentences:

  • A minimum of 10 years if in possession of a firearm;
  • A minimum of 20 years of the weapon was discharged;
  • A minimum of 25 years if the victim was injured or killed by the firearm.

Carjacking is considered an extremely serious crime in Florida and those arrested for the crime are often treated harshly by the court system. If you have been arrested for carjacking in Orlando, do not make the mistake of defending yourself in court. The rest of your life hangs in the balance.

Call our office today for a free case evaluation. We can advise you on an effective course of action as you move forward through the legal process. Let us assist you as you fight for your rights in a court of law.

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