When you are arrested in Jacksonville and charges are filed against you, there are a few roads you can take. You have the right to have a trial and make the state prove the charges against you. A criminal defense attorney will represent you and fight for your rights.
If you choose to not take the risk of a trial, you can enter into a negotiated sentence with the prosecutor in your case or enter a plea to the court. When you enter a plea to the court, also referred to as a “straight up” plea, you are not contesting the charge and leaving your fate up to the discretion of the judge. The judge can give you time served, probation, or the maximum sentence under the law.
If you enter a plea to the judge, you are entitled to a Presentence Investigation Report (PSI). A PSI is essentially a collection of your personal background information and information about the current crime. These reports are usually ordered when you enter a straight up plea unless a waiver is executed. A PSI report is completed by the Florida Department of Corrections. The report includes:
1. A complete description of the situation surrounding the current crime which the offender with which the offender has been charged. It will include a summary of the trial transcript if there is one, the plea agreement, if there is one, and the offender’s version and explanation of the criminal activity if the offender chooses to discuss it.
2. The offender’s criminal history.
3. The offender’s educational background.
4. The offender’s employment history.
5. The offender’s financial status.
6. The social history of the offender, including family, marital status, and interests.
7. The residential history of the offender.
8. Medical History.
9. The information about the environment the offender will go to after being sentenced.
10. Resources available to the offender, including drug treatment and career training programs.