A new Florida law taking effect July 1 promises to be a game-changing move toward transparency in the criminal justice system.
The law (CS/CS/SB 1392: Criminal Justice) requires all 67 counties to release 25 percent more criminal-justice system data pertaining to:
The data will be collected and published in a statewide Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) system publically accessible by the summer of 2019.
Going forward, Attorneys, Prosecutors, and the public will be able to view county-level information such as:
- Details on plea bargains for felonies and misdemeanors
- Case outcomes broken down by race and ethnicity
- How bail is granted and terms
- Probation and parole revocations due to technical violations or to arrests for a new offense
Florida Criminal Justice System Won’t Be So Blind and That’s Good
In America, we’re taught our justice system is blind. The intent is that everyone is treated equally in the court of law. Regardless of your race or ethnicity, economic status, or geographic location, you’ll receive impartial and objective treatment from the justice system.
That’s the intent. In practice, justice outcomes may vary from county to county—even case by case—based on matters such as having the right connections and influence or having an inexperienced vs. experienced Criminal Defense Attorney.
Today, it’s challenging to answer important questions about the Florida justice system like:
- Who is assigned bail?
- Are people from different races treated fairly?
- What are common plea bargain deals for specific charges?
That will change when the Florida justice system data is brought into the light and accessible from a central location. We’ll all be empowered to see if justice is truly blind.
Policy makers will be able to use the data to spot negative trends in need of attention.
District Attorneys can see how their district measures up to other districts in handling various types of cases.
Criminal Defense Attorneys like Fusco Law Group will be able to use the data to help negotiate fair and standard outcomes for their clients.
When it comes to the defense of our clients, Fusco Law Group Attorneys will always use whatever resources are available to investigate, strategize and implement a plan of action to obtain the best possible outcome for our clients. We look forward to using the Florida justice system database when it comes online.
If you have a question regarding a legal matter, a Criminal Defense Attorney from the Fusco Law Group can help. Call the Fusco Law Group: (904) 567-3113 for a free consultation.