Weighing stuff is pretty simple, right? Just put stuff on a scale, watch for a number to pop up on the screen, and bam–you’ve got a weight. When it comes to weighing drugs in a drug trafficking case, it’s not so simple. Everyone has watched the crime show de jour, and been dazzled by the high tech gadgets highly paid actors use to find evidence. Unfortunately, real life is not as high tech. Unfortunately, real life government crime fighters are not always as thorough as their show biz counterparts.
Our real life crime drama comes from the case of Jackson v. State, 76 So.3d 1130 (Fla. 4th DCA 2012). Jackson was convicted of trafficking in cocaine greater than 200 grams, but less than 400 grams, and possession of cannabis. For those of you keeping score at home, this charge carries a minimum mandatory prison term of 7 years, and a minimum fine of $100,000. Even though the charge carried a minimum of 7 years, the judge gave Jackson 15 years on the trafficking (and time served on the possession of cannabis…gee, how merciful…).