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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Michael D. Crews

Florida Department of Corrections
Michael D. Crews, Secretary

Part II: Offense to Sentence Date Lag Time Comparison

FACT: Scoresheets that have been received by the Department of Corrections for offenders sentenced under the Florida Criminal Punishment Code are not representative of the true impact of sentencing events under the Code.

FINDINGS:

  • There were 90,080 scoresheets submitted to the Department of Corrections with sentence dates in FY2008-2009 and offense dates on or after October 1, 2007. The number of scoresheets submitted to the Department of Corrections with sentence dates in FY2007-2008 and offense dates on or after October 1, 2006 was 97,371.

  • Lag Time - The average length of time that passes from the date an offender commits a crime to the date the offender is sentenced for that crime is 5.9 months for sentencing events in FY2008-2009 (Table 1).

  • More serious and violent crimes typically have much longer lag time than the less serious property or drug crimes. A data file that is constrained by the date of offense must allow for enough time for the serious and violent crimes to be processed and convicted in order to represent a true distribution of sentencing events. The Florida Criminal Punishment Code went into effect for offenses committed on or after October 1, 1998. As of September 1, 2009, the Department of Corrections had received 1,788,585 Code scoresheets. However, because of the long lag time for serious offenses, the information to date is skewed more heavily by the less serious offenses.

  • The average lag time for FY2007-2008 sentencing events is 5.9 months. When the lag times are examined by offense severity level and type of primary offense, the average lag time for level 10 offenses (most serious) was 10.2 months for sentencing events during FY2007-2008. In FY2008-2009, the average lag time for level 10 offenses was 9.8 months. Also, for murder/manslaughter, the average lag time from offense to sentence is 10.7 months for sentencing dates in FY2007-2008 and 10.6 months for FY2008- 2009 (Table 2).

  • Drug offenses comprised the largest group of scoresheets received in both FY2007-2008 (36.2%) and FY2008-2009 (35.2%) (Table 3).

  • The more violent, serious offenses represented 14.7% of the scoresheets in FY2007-2008 and 15.6% in FY2008-2009 (Table 3).

Table 1 Comparison of Average Time from Offense Date to Sentence Date by Offense Severity Level of Primary Offense, in Months

Offense Severity Level FY2005-2006 Sentence Dates1 FY2006-2007 Sentence Dates2
1 5.1 5.3
2 6.2 6.1
3 5.3 5.2
4 5.8 5.8
5 6.3 6.2
6 6.8 6.6
7 7.6 7.4
8 8.8 8.6
9 9.3 9.2
10 10.2 9.8
Overall Average 5.9 5.9
1 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2006.
2 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2007.

Table 2 Comparison of Average "Lag" Time from Offense Date to Sentence Date by Primary Offense, in Months

Primary Offense FY2005-2006 Sentence Dates1 FY2006-2007 Sentence Dates2
Murder/Manslaughter 10.7 10.6
Sexual/Lewd Behavior 9.6 9.6
Robbery 7.3 7.5
Violent, Other 6.6 6.4
Burglary 6.2 6.1
Property Theft/Fraud/Damage 6.2 6.2
Drugs 5.6 5.5
Weapons 6.1 5.9
Other 5.2 5.4
Overall Average 5.9 5.9
1 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2006.
2 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2007.

Figure 1 Distribution of Offense Group Sentence Dates in FY2007-2008 vs. FY2008-2009

Distribution of Offense Group, Sentence Dates FY 2005-2006 vs. Sentence Dates FY 2006-2007

Table 3 Distribution of Offense Sentence Dates FY 2007-2008 vs. Sentence Dates FY 2008-2009

Primary Offense FY2007-2008 Sentence Dates1 FY2008-2009 Sentence Dates2
Murder/Manslaughter 287 274
0.3% 0.3%
Sexual Offenses 684 607
0.7% 0.7%
Robbery 2,494 2,635
2.6% 2.9%
Violent Personal Offenses 10,665 10,356
11.0% 11.5%
Burglary 9,370 9,915
9.6% 11.0%
Theft/Forgery/Fraud 18,993 19,427
19.5% 21.6%
Drugs 35,292 31,718
36.2% 35.2%
Weapons 2,556 2,755
2.6% 3.1%
Other 17,030 12,393
17.5% 13.8%
Total 97,371 90,080
100.0% 100.0%
1 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2006.
2 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2007.

Table 4 Distribution of Offense

Primary Offense FY2007-2008 Sentence Dates1 FY2008-2009 Sentence Dates2
Murder/Manslaughter 287 0.3% 274 0.3%
1st Degree Murder 80 0.1% 51 0.1%
2nd Degree Murder 112 0.1% 97 0.1%
3rd Degree Murder 3 0.0% 7 0.0%
Homicide, Other 2 0.0% 5 0.0%
Manslaughter 38 0.0% 71 0.1%
DUI Manslaughter 52 0.1% 43 0.0%
Sexual Offenses 684 0.7% 607 0.7%
Capital Sexual Battery 26 0.0% 27 0.0%
Life Sexual Battery 25 0.0% 31 0.0%
1st Degree Sexual Battery 31 0.0% 27 0.0%
2nd Degree Sexual Battery 100 0.1% 96 0.1
Sexual Assault, Other 2 0.0% 5 0.0%
Lewd/Lascivious Behavior 500 0.5% 421 0.5%
Robbery 2,494 2.6% 2,635 2.9%
Robbery with Weapon 934 1.0% 952 1.1%
Robbery without Weapon 1,482 1.5% 1,528 1.7%
Home Invasion, Robbery 78 0.1% 155 0.2%
Violent Personal Offenses 10,665 11.0% 10,356 11.5%
Home Invasion, Other 117 0.1% 103 0.1%
Carjacking 1,602 1.6% 1,472 1.6%
Aggravated Assault 1,212 1.2% 1,112 1.2%
Aggravated Battery 1,429 1.5% 1,263 1.4%
Assault/Battery on L.E.O. 541 0.6% 841 0.9%
Assault/Battery, Other 219 0.2% 174 0.2%
Aggravated Stalking 1,616 1.7% 1,501 1.7%
Resisting Arrest with Violence 350 0.4% 324 0.4%
Kidnapping 193 0.2% 149 0.2%
Arson 967 1.0% 899 1.0%
Abuse of Children 1,870 1.9% 2,042 2.3%
Violent, Other 427 0.4% 349 0.4%
Leaving Accident, Injury/Death 91 0.1% 93 0.1%
DUI, Injury 31 0.0% 34 0.0%
Burglary 9,370 9.6% 9,915 11.0%
Burglary, Structure 5,642 5.8% 5,813 6.5%
Burglary, Dwelling 2,540 2.6% 2,934 3.3%
Burglary, Armed 245 0.3% 245 0.3%
Burglary with Assault 190 0.2% 235 0.3%
Burglary/Trespass, Other 753 0.8% 688 0.8%
Theft/Forgery/Fraud 18,993 19.5% 19,427 21.6%
Grand Theft, Other 7,412 7.6% 7,690 8.5%
Grand Theft, Automobile 2,220 2.3% 1,809 2.0%
Stolen Property 2,322 2.4% 2,686 3.0%
Forgery/Counterfeiting 3,092 3.2% 2,934 3.3%
Worthless Checks 321 0.3% 280 0.3%
Fraudulent Practices 2,091 2.1% 2,244 2.5%
Theft/Property Damage, Other 1,535 1.6% 1,784 2.0%
Drugs 35,292 36.2 31,718 35.2
Drugs, Manufacture/Sale/Purchase 9,918 10.0% 9,447 10.5%
Drugs, Trafficking 1,130 1.2% 1,311 1.5%
Drugs, Possession/Other 24,244 24.9% 20,960 23.3%
Weapons 2,556 2.6% 2,755 3.1%
Weapons, Discharging 236 0.2% 245 0.3%
Weapons, Possession 2,316 2.4% 2,508 2.8%
Weapons, Other 4 0.0% 2 0.0%
Other 17,030 17.5% 12,393 13.8%
Escape 2,775 2.8% 2,483 2.8%
DUI, No Injury 978 1.0% 886 1.0%
Traffic, Other 9,886 10.2% 6,092 6.8%
Racketeering 25 0.0% 13 0.0%
Pollution/Hazardous Materials 62 0.1% 55 0.1%
Criminal Justice System 2,678 2.8% 2,339 2.6%
Other 626 0.6% 525 0.6%
Total 97,371 100.0% 90,080 100.0%
1 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2006.
2 Offense dates on or after October 1, 2007.