Florida Senate - 2014 SB 698 By Senator Stargel 15-01101-14 2014698__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to sexual misconduct with students by 3 authority figures; providing a short title; creating 4 s. 775.0862, F.S.; providing definitions; providing 5 for reclassification of specified sexual offenses 6 committed against a student by an authority figure; 7 providing for severity ranking of offenses; amending 8 s. 921.0022, F.S.; providing for application of the 9 severity ranking chart of the Criminal Punishment 10 Code; providing an effective date. 11 12 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 13 14 Section 1. This act may be cited as the “Sexual Misconduct 15 with Students by Authority Figures Act.” 16 Section 2. Section 775.0862, Florida Statutes, is created 17 to read: 18 775.0862 Sexual battery offenses against students by 19 authority figures; reclassification.— 20 (1) For purposes of this section, the term: 21 (a) “Authority figure” means a school officer, a teacher or 22 other instructional person, an administrator or other school 23 administrative person, a school volunteer, an educational 24 support employee, or an education service provider who is 25 employed by, under contract with, working at, or providing 26 volunteer services to an educational institution. 27 (b) “Educational institution” means an entity providing 28 instructional programs of study by means of regular classes, 29 activities, or courses, including virtual courses, to students 30 in early learning programs or in prekindergarten through grade 31 12. 32 (c) “Student” means a child who is enrolled in early 33 learning or prekindergarten through grade 12. 34 (2) The felony degree of a violation of: 35 (a) An offense listed in s. 775.21(4)(a)1.; or 36 (b) An offense listed in s. 943.0435(1)(a)1.a. 37 38 shall be, unless the offense falls within s. 794.011(4)(g), 39 reclassified as provided in this section if the offense is 40 committed by an authority figure of an educational institution 41 against a student of the educational institution. 42 (3)(a) In the case of a felony of the third degree, the 43 offense is reclassified to a felony of the second degree. 44 (b) In the case of a felony of the second degree, the 45 offense is reclassified to a felony of the first degree. 46 (c) In the case of a felony of the first degree, the 47 offense is reclassified to a life felony. 48 49 For purposes of sentencing under chapter 921 and determining 50 incentive gain-time eligibility under chapter 944, a felony 51 offense that is reclassified under this subsection is ranked one 52 level above the ranking under s. 921.0022 or s. 921.0023 of the 53 offense committed. 54 Section 3. Subsection (2) of section 921.0022, Florida 55 Statutes, is amended to read: 56 921.0022 Criminal Punishment Code; offense severity ranking 57 chart.— 58 (2) The offense severity ranking chart has 10 offense 59 levels, ranked from least severe, which are level 1 offenses, to 60 most severe, which are level 10 offenses, and each felony 61 offense is assigned to a level according to the severity of the 62 offense. For purposes of determining which felony offenses are 63 specifically listed in the offense severity ranking chart and 64 which severity level has been assigned to each of these 65 offenses, the numerical statutory references in the left column 66 of the chart and the felony degree designations in the middle 67 column of the chart are controlling; the language in the right 68 column of the chart is provided solely for descriptive purposes. 69 Reclassification of the degree of the felony through the 70 application of s. 775.0845, s. 775.0861, s. 775.0862, s. 71 775.087, s. 775.0875, s. 794.023, or any other law that provides 72 an enhanced penalty for a felony offense, to any offense listed 73 in the offense severity ranking chart in this section shall not 74 cause the offense to become unlisted and is not subject to the 75 provisions of s. 921.0023. 76 Section 4. This act shall take effect October 1, 2014.