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Sentence Enhancements

Greenville Sentence Enhancements Attorneys

Helping Clients in Spartanburg, Anderson, Pickens, and Oconee Counties

When you are convicted of a crime, the judge will determine your sentence. In some cases, the judge may decide to enhance your sentence. This means that the judge will increase the length of your sentence or impose additional penalties. Sentence enhancements are typically reserved for those who have been convicted of a crime that is considered more serious or dangerous than others.

At Fedalei & Reid, LLC, we understand that facing a sentence enhancement can be incredibly stressful. Our Greenville sentence enhancement lawyers are here to help you understand your rights and options. We can help you fight the enhancement and work to minimize the potential penalties you face.

Call our office today at (864) 668-1661 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with a member of our team. Hablamos Español.

What Is a Sentence Enhancement?

A sentence enhancement is a penalty that is added to a criminal sentence. The purpose of a sentence enhancement is to increase the penalties for certain crimes. In other words, a sentence enhancement is a way for the court to punish a defendant more severely for a particular crime.

There are several different types of sentence enhancements, including:

  • Minimum mandatory sentences
  • Three-strikes laws
  • Firearm enhancements
  • Drug-free zone enhancements
  • Repeat offender enhancements
  • Aggravating factors

What Is a Minimum Mandatory Sentence?

A minimum mandatory sentence is a type of sentence enhancement. It is a sentence that is required by law. In other words, if you are convicted of a crime that carries a minimum mandatory sentence, the judge does not have the discretion to impose a lesser sentence. The judge must impose the minimum mandatory sentence.

Minimum mandatory sentences are typically reserved for those who are convicted of serious crimes, such as violent crimes or drug offenses. The purpose of a minimum mandatory sentence is to ensure that those who are convicted of certain crimes are punished more severely.

Some examples of crimes that carry a minimum mandatory sentence include:

  • Armed robbery
  • Drug trafficking
  • Sexual assault
  • Murder

What Is a Three-Strikes Law?

A three-strikes law is a type of sentence enhancement. It is a law that requires the court to impose a more severe sentence on those who are convicted of a crime if they have been previously convicted of one or more serious crimes. The purpose of a three-strikes law is to ensure that those who are convicted of multiple serious crimes are punished more severely.

Three-strikes laws are typically reserved for those who are convicted of violent crimes. However, some states have expanded their three-strikes laws to include non-violent crimes, such as drug offenses. The specific requirements of a three-strikes law vary from state to state.

Some examples of crimes that may be considered a “strike” under a three-strikes law include:

  • Murder
  • Rape
  • Armed robbery
  • Drug trafficking
  • Aggravated assault

What Is a Firearm Enhancement?

A firearm enhancement is a type of sentence enhancement. It is a penalty that is added to a criminal sentence if the court determines that the defendant used a firearm during the commission of the crime. The purpose of a firearm enhancement is to increase the penalties for a crime if the defendant used a firearm, as this is considered more dangerous.

Some examples of crimes that may carry a firearm enhancement include:

  • Armed robbery
  • Aggravated assault
  • Drug trafficking

What Is a Drug-Free Zone Enhancement?

A drug-free zone enhancement is a type of sentence enhancement. It is a penalty that is added to a criminal sentence if the court determines that the defendant committed a drug offense within a certain distance of a drug-free zone. The purpose of a drug-free zone enhancement is to increase the penalties for a drug offense if the defendant committed the offense near a drug-free zone, as this is considered more dangerous.

Some examples of drug offenses that may carry a drug-free zone enhancement include:

  • Drug trafficking
  • Drug manufacturing
  • Drug distribution

What Is a Repeat Offender Enhancement?

A repeat offender enhancement is a type of sentence enhancement. It is a penalty that is added to a criminal sentence if the court determines that the defendant is a repeat offender. The purpose of a repeat offender enhancement is to increase the penalties for a crime if the defendant has been previously convicted of one or more crimes.

Repeat offender enhancements are typically reserved for those who are convicted of certain crimes. The specific requirements of a repeat offender enhancement vary from state to state.

Some examples of crimes that may carry a repeat offender enhancement include:

  • Driving under the influence (DUI)
  • Domestic violence
  • Assault and battery

What Are Aggravating Factors?

An aggravating factor is a factor that the court may consider when determining a sentence. If the court determines that one or more aggravating factors are present, the court may increase the penalties for the crime. The purpose of an aggravating factor is to ensure that those who are convicted of certain crimes are punished more severely.

Aggravating factors are typically reserved for those who are convicted of serious crimes, such as violent crimes or drug offenses. The specific aggravating factors that the court may consider vary from state to state.

Some examples of aggravating factors that the court may consider include:

  • The defendant used a weapon during the commission of the crime
  • The defendant caused serious bodily harm to the victim
  • The defendant has a prior criminal record
  • The defendant committed the crime for financial gain

What Are the Penalties for a Sentence Enhancement?

If you are convicted of a crime and the court determines that you are eligible for a sentence enhancement, you will face additional penalties. The specific penalties that you face will depend on the type of sentence enhancement that you are facing.

Some examples of penalties that you may face if you are convicted of a crime and the court determines that you are eligible for a sentence enhancement include:

  • A longer prison sentence
  • More expensive fines
  • Probation
  • Community service
  • Mandatory counseling

How Can a Sentence Enhancement Affect My Life Outside of Prison?

A sentence enhancement can have a significant impact on your life outside of prison. Some examples of how a sentence enhancement can affect your life outside of prison include:

  • You may be required to register as a sex offender
  • You may be prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm
  • You may be required to complete a drug or alcohol treatment program
  • You may be required to pay restitution to the victim

How Can a Sentence Enhancement Be Fought?

If you are facing a sentence enhancement, it is important to understand that you have the right to fight the enhancement. You are not required to accept the enhancement and the penalties that come with it. You can challenge the enhancement and work to have it dismissed.

There are several different ways that a sentence enhancement can be fought, including:

  • Challenging the evidence against you
  • Challenging the legality of the arrest
  • Challenging the legality of the search and seizure
  • Challenging the credibility of the witnesses
  • Challenging the constitutionality of the law

It is important to note that fighting a sentence enhancement can be incredibly complex. The court will not simply dismiss the enhancement because you ask them to. You will need to present a strong case that demonstrates why the enhancement should be dismissed. This is why it is so important to work with an experienced criminal defense attorney if you are facing a sentence enhancement.

If you are dealing with a sentence enhancement, we strongly recommend reaching out to our team either online or by giving us a call at (864) 668-1661. We are here to discuss your case and help you explore available options.

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