What is the Time for doing the Crime?
By: Rebecca Schwartz
Crimes are divided into two categories: misdemeanors and felonies. A misdemeanor is less serious than a felony. Felonies can be punishable by death or up to life imprisonment. Misdemeanors can be punishable by up to one year in prison. These two broad categories–felonies and misdemeanors can be further categorized by “degrees” which signify the seriousness of the crime. A misdemeanor can be labeled first degree, being the most serious, to second degree, being the least serious. A felony can be labeled first degree, being the most serious, to second degree, all the way down to third degree.
Below you find some crimes and their punishments.
Fraudulent use of Credit Cards
Shop until you drop…with your OWN money!
- If you spend less than $100 with the credit card you are guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree. You can be placed in jail for up to one year.
- If you spend more than $100 with the credit card you are guilty of a felony of the third degree. You can be placed in jail for up to five years.
False Bomb Report
A Big NO NO!
- It is unlawful for any person to make a false report, with the intent to deceive,
mislead, or misinform any person, concerning the placing or planting of any bomb, dynamite, or other deadly explosive.
- A person found guilty of a felony of the second degree can be jailed for up to 15 years.
Please spare us all
- It is unlawful to expose or exhibit one’s sexual organs in public or on the private premises of another, or near as to be seen from such private premises in a vulgar or indecent manner, or to be naked in public except in a place provided for such a purpose. (A mother’s breast feeding does not violate this law)
- A misdemeanor of the first degree- can be jailed for up to one year
Wearing a Mask
Are you that ugly?
- The felony or misdemeanor degree of any criminal offense will be punished at the next degree, if while committing the offense the offender was wearing a hood, mask, or other device used to hide one’s identity.
Use of Law Enforcement’s Firearm
Seriously guy, this could be a lethal mistake!
- A person who (without authorization) takes a firearm from a law enforcement officer.
- Commits a felony of the third degree- can be jailed for up to 5 years.
*If a person takes the firearm from a law enforcement officer and then commits a crime using that firearm, the punishment of that crime is increased by one degree. (i.e. third degree to felony of the second degree) in addition to the initial punishment.
Illegal use of Shopping Carts
Consider the rest of us: if you take ’em, how do we carry our food?
- To remove any shopping cart from the premises or parking area of a retail establishment with the intent of taking either temporarily or permanently.
- Misdemeanor of the first degree- can be jailed for up to one year.
* Source: The 2002 Florida Law Enforcement Handbook (2003 is not yet published).