SB 0245 Revises numerous sentencing provisions
LR Number:1115S.01I Fiscal Note:1115-01
Committee:Civil and Criminal Jurisprudence
Last Action:02/14/01 - Voted Do Pass S Civil & Criminal Jurisprudence Journal page:
Effective Date:August 28, 2001
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Current Bill Summary

SB 245 - This act revises numerous sentencing provisions. The act allows judicial discretion in determining whether the prior and persistent drug sentencing provisions should apply, or whether the court should instead order seizure of any assets directly related to the commission of the offense and order an approved treatment program.

Courts shall impose sentencing in all criminal trials after verdict or plea, except for first degree murder. The act requires courts to consider the Sentencing Commission guidelines. Presentence investigations shall include the recommended sentence established by the Sentencing Commission, a description of the impact of the crime upon the victim, and available alternatives to incarceration, including opportunities for restorative justice. The maximum penalty for a Class D felony is reduced from five to four years; the maximum penalty for a Class C felony is increased from seven to eight years. Extended sentencing terms for persistent offenders are deleted.

In all cases involving violations of Chapter 195, RSMo, the court has discretion to deviate from recommended guidelines, but shall enter written findings for any deviation for statistical purposes only. The findings shall be sent to the Sentencing Commission and made part of the offender's probation and parole record. Failure to enter written findings in these cases, when the sentence ordered is in excess of the guidelines, authorizes but does not require the Board to adjust the sentence to bring it into compliance with the guidelines. If the court suspends the imposition or execution of any sentence, the court may consider various restorative justice methods, such as restitution, community service, or work release programs. Detention shall be a condition of probation, instituted by order of court or at the discretion of the board of probation or parole.

The act allows persons convicted of statutory rape in the first degree and statutory sodomy in the first degree, who have no prior convictions for either crime, to be eligible for assessment by the sexual offender treatment unit of the Department of Corrections. The crimes of pharmacy robbery in the first degree and pharmacy robbery in the second degree are repealed.

"Armed criminal action" is limited to firearms, knives over 4 inches and explosives, instead of dangerous instrument or deadly weapon. The first offense is a Class C felony; second offense committed at a different time, a Class B felony; and third offense, committed at different times, a Class A felony. Defendants convicted of armed criminal action may be eligible for parole, probation, conditional release or suspended imposition or execution of sentence. The act retains the minimum sentence requirements for armed criminal action. The independent audit required of law enforcement agencies involved in federal forfeitures shall be provided to the Department of Public Safety, as well as to the governing body of the agency. The Department shall not issue funds to any law enforcement agency that fails to comply.

This act is similar to SS/SCS/SB 335 (Perfected) (1999).