Thousands of Florida convicts who violate probation would have to go to prison for at least five years under a measure approved yesterday by a House committee, reports the St. Petersburg Times. It was a reaction to last month’s abduction and murder of Carlie Brucia in Sarasora.
The bill is aimed at probation violators because Joseph Smith, accused of killing the 11-year-old girl, had violated probation a number of times but remained on the street. Under the bill, anyone accused of violating probation who has previously committed certain felonies would be expected to be sentenced to at least five years in prison. There would be an exception for people deemed to be no danger to society – a decision the judge would have to put in writing.
It’s not clear how many violators might be sent to prison under the bill or what it would cost.