FLORIDA . The Cost Of The Three Strikes Law..
Judge Opposes $20 Life Sentence..
Three-Strikes Law Gives Court No Choice
WKMG-TV/DT Orlando | 7.16.03 --

A judge reluctantly gave a man life in prison after a $20 burglary, saying he had no choice under a state law that requires such terms for repeat offenders.
Circuit Judge Bob Wattles called the punishment unjust and unfair.

I dont have the authority or the power to not sentence you to life, Wattles told Maurice Leonard Reed, 37, of nearby Apopka, at his Tuesday sentencing.

Prosecutors had designated Reed a prison release re-offender under a state law that requires harsher penalties for some repeat offenders.
Reed was charged in February with robbery and burglary from an attempted undercover drug buy. He had jumped into an undercover officers car and offered to sell him drugs. When the deputy was distracted, Reed snatched a $20 bill from his hand, hit him in the face and jumped out of the car. He was convicted last month.
The Florida statute, in place since 1997, lets prosecutors seek enhanced sentences for people who commit certain felonies, such as burglary, within three years of release from prison.
As of the end of May, 302 people have been sentenced statewide under the law this year, according to the Florida Department of Corrections.
Reeds attorney, Christopher Smith, said he will appeal, challenging the burglary conviction.
I just felt this was a little overzealous, Smith said.
During his sentencing hearing, Reed acknowledged that he had led a life of crime. He has had convictions ranging from aggravated battery with a deadly weapon to cocaine and heroin sales.
I know Ive made some mistakes in my life, Reed told the judge. I dont think putting me away for life is going to bring on justice. I just come to the court for mercy.
The judge said his hands were tied and noted that the cost of Reeds incarceration will be $560,000 if he lives to be age 75.
You might get an appellate review, the judge said. You might have one glimmer of hope. Good luck, Mr. Reed.

Last March, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld lengthy sentences for two men who were convicted of petty thefts under Californias three strikes law.


AS A MOTHER OF 2 SONS affected by the three strikes law I DEMAND abolishment of same and other following laws from the day they became official


1. The prisoner releasee reoffender act which violates the constitutional principle of separation of powers and the right to due process of the law.

2.The habitual offender law

3.The life without parole or gain time law

4.The death penalty


1.They are unconstitutional

2. Too many young offenders are sentenced to life without a chance of parole

3 They are unfair as the re-convicted are serving time again for crimes for which they have already paid the penalty

4 A human beings WHOLE life is at stake.

There is no incentive to change without a chance of parole and the shortening of a sentence with good time. It becomes a very dangerous situation as the prisoners have nothing to lose by committing other felonies inside the prison.

- ACLU Archives / 10 Reasons To Oppose Three Strikes, Youre

- PRISON COSTS / Tallahassee Democrat..

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Latest Signatures

  • 12 December 2015800. Lora C
    I feel for your situation. Please see my petition here at this site /dointime as well I have a site for prisoners families at http://groups.msn.com/penitentiarypals. We here in Washington State have a 3 strikes law as well although California & some o
  • 12 December 2015799. Lisa P
    case by case basis is the only hope for the future which will consist of these young men.
  • 12 December 2015798. Clara Petinaf
    I support this petition
  • 07 December 2015797. Kay L
    I oppose the death penalty in a system so filled with error. Until we can get it right, don't claim to be killing anyone in my name.
  • 06 December 2015796. Shirley C
    I support this petition
  • 05 December 2015795. Samantha O
    This law is not only unjust and unfair, it is expensive. Because we are wasting money keeping soft criminals in prison, our tax dollars are being pulled away from things that truly matter, such as education and health care. Perhaps investing in things tha
  • 05 December 2015794. Toja D
    We need Justice and not a 3 strike law for all
  • 02 December 2015793. Katie C
    I support this petition
  • 01 December 2015792. Louise S
    I support this petition
  • 22 November 2015791. Tonya S
    I support this petition
  • 22 November 2015790. Daren C
    I support this petition
  • 19 November 2015789. Christa P
    I support this petition
  • 18 November 2015788. Linda C
    I am sure that if we would look at how many times our politicians, judges and lawyers committed crimes, they would or should ALL be in prison!!! "he who is without sin, let him cast the first stone" John 8:7
  • 17 November 2015787. Regina Deniseb
    I'm also a victim of the habitual law. I'm currently on parole until 10-16-07 for a $13.30 check
  • 14 November 2015786. Johnathan C
    were not animials, and should't be treated like such.
  • 13 November 2015785. Annette M
    This law could be alot better. It just needs a good amount of fine tuning. It operates from emotion, not from logic.
  • 13 November 2015784. Aaron N
  • 13 November 2015783. Zackary Warreny
    I support this petition
  • 12 November 2015782. Erin B
    I support this petition
  • 09 November 2015781. Grace C
    I support this petition
  • 07 November 2015780. Marcella P
    I support this petition
  • 07 November 2015779. Kelli U
    I support this petition
  • 06 November 2015778. Donna M
    I support this petition
  • 31 October 2015777. Kathy T
    I support this petition
  • 31 October 2015776. Zach G
    I think this law is pretty unfair.
  • 27 October 2015775. Metayer Gonzales
    I support this petition
  • 26 October 2015774. Wyatt J
    One of the greatest injustices of our time is being resisted. Good luck, please sign on!

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Kendra KentBy:
School and EducationIn:
Petition target:
Governor Jeb Bush, Florida Politicians, Citizens Of Florida


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