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Ron DeSantis approves changes in felony theft sentencing

When lawmakers passed the bill in May, it received mixed reactions. Some lawmakers called it an “important first step,” while others said they would have liked to see it do more.
Gov. Ron DeSantis [MARTHA ASENCIO-RHINE | Times]
Published Jul. 1
Updated Jul. 1

Florida will soon see the first change in 35 years to the legal threshold for felony theft after Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a criminal-justice package into law on Friday.

Raising the threshold that triggers felony theft charges from $300 to $750 was one of the biggest changes in the bill (HB 7125).

Other changes include making it easier for felons to get professional licenses and granting state attorneys more discretion over whether juvenile cases should be transferred to adult court, rather than making that process automatic in certain cases.

RELATED COVERAGE: Stealing a phone in Florida can be a life-changing felony. Big retail companies want to keep it that way.

Florida Legislature sends criminal justice reform to DeSantis, but advocates see mixed victory

House sponsor Paul Renner, R-Palm Coast, issued a statement Friday evening describing the bill as “the largest criminal justice reform package in more than a generation. This law now provides a framework that preserves our nearly 50-year low crime rate while taking a new approach to low level, non-violent offenders and increases employment opportunities for former felons seeking employment.”

But when lawmakers passed the bill in May, it received mixed reactions. Some lawmakers called it an “important first step,” while others said they would have liked to see it do more.

Editor’s note: This story was corrected from a past version which had incorrect information about what HB 7125 does.

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