New gun law would put convicted felons found with guns in prison for 10 years


ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - Governor Rick Scott signed a law that will make violent, gun-carrying convicted felons have mandatory 10 year sentences if they are caught with a gun in their possession again.

The new law may make communities feel safer, but it could also cost taxpayers more.

"This is going to have a significant impact on prison population and cost, but this is a case were the state decided, I think wisely to spend the money to remove these dangerous people from the community," said State Attorney of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Lawson Lamar.

Until now, any convicted felon found with a gun faced up to five years in prison, however under the new law, they would be sent away for a mandatory ten years.

Sanford resident Calvin Donaldson, whose son Corey was shot and killed, said his life would be very different had the law been in place a year ago.

"I just wish to God it would have been enacted long before," Donaldson said.

The law also states that violent gun-carrying convicted felons would get the mandatory sentence even if they were not committing a crime.

Lamar calls it a life-saving piece of legislation.

"These are people who have already been very dangerous to the community," Lamar said.

Police said the law would also help them when they receive tips about a crime about to happen where a gun will be used.