Palmer v. State, No. 62,449

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Florida
Writing for the CourtMcDONALD; ALDERMAN; ALDERMAN
Citation438 So.2d 1
PartiesRonald Gene PALMER, Petitioner, v. STATE of Florida, Respondent.
Docket NumberNo. 62,449
Decision Date01 September 1983

Page 1

438 So.2d 1
Ronald Gene PALMER, Petitioner,
v.
STATE of Florida, Respondent.
No. 62,449.
Supreme Court of Florida.
Sept. 1, 1983.
Rehearing Denied Oct. 19, 1983.

Page 2

Richard L. Jornadby, Public Defender and Allen J. DeWeese, Asst. Public Defender, West Palm Beach, for petitioner.

Jim Smith, Atty. Gen. and Sharon Lee Stedman, Asst. Atty. Gen., West Palm Beach, for respondent.

McDONALD, Justice.

This case is before us to review a decision of the Fourth District Court of Appeal, Palmer v. State, 416 So.2d 878 (Fla. 4th DCA 1982). We quash that portion of the district court's opinion allowing the imposition of cumulative three-year mandatory minimums for each of thirteen consecutive sentences arising from the same criminal episode.

On July 28, 1979 Ronald Gene Palmer walked into an Oakland Park funeral parlor during a wake, held a revolver to the head of the assistant funeral director, and ordered him to inform the twenty-five to thirty mourners present that a robbery was taking place. Brandishing the pistol, Palmer ordered the mourners to throw their money and valuables on the floor and threatened to kill them if they failed to comply. He also forced the assistant director to open the funeral home cash box. After fifteen to twenty minutes, and having stuffed the mourners' cash and wallets into his pockets and waistband, Palmer left the funeral home. He was apprehended almost immediately by police responding to a call from mourners who had managed to sneak out a side door of the funeral home without being noticed. Police returned Palmer to the funeral home where those he had just victimized identified him as the robber.

After trial, during which defense counsel's argument centered on Palmer's state of mind at the time he committed the acts charged, a Broward County jury convicted Palmer on all counts of a sixteen-count information. The trial court sentenced Palmer to seventy-five years' imprisonment on each of thirteen robbery counts, the sentences to run consecutively for a total of 975 years. The court also imposed the mandatory minimum of three years on each robbery count for a total of thirty-nine years. On counts of aggravated assault and carrying a concealed firearm Palmer received sentences of five years for each, consecutive to each other and to the robbery counts. The trial court retained jurisdiction on all fifteen sentences for a total of 328 1/3 years of the total 985-year sentence. On appeal the fourth district affirmed all aspects of the convictions and sentences, except that it reversed the retention of jurisdiction over one-third of the sentence for carrying a concealed weapon.

Page 3

We are primarily concerned with the issue of whether the trial court erred in imposing three-year mandatory minimums on each of thirteen consecutive sentences, for a total of thirty-nine years without eligibility for parole. We conclude that this portion of the sentences imposed constitutes reversible error.

Subsection 775.087(2), Florida Statutes (1981), provides that any person who had in his possession a firearm during the commission of certain specified felonies, including robbery, shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of three calendar years. Subsection 775.021(4), Florida Statutes (1981), requires separate sentences for separate offenses 1 arising from a single criminal...

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144 practice notes
  • Carawan v. State, No. 69384
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • September 3, 1987
    ...its terms.' " State v. Wershow, 343 So.2d 605, 608 (Fla.1977), quoting Ex Parte Amos, 93 Fla. 5, 112 So. 289 (1927). Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1, 3 We move now to consider the interrelationship of these rules of construction. We begin with the area of multiple-punishments law that has......
  • Bunkley v. State, No. SC01-297.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • May 27, 2004
    ...1987), withdrawn, 530 So.2d 282 (Fla.1988), this Court rendered an initial opinion as to whether this Court's decision in Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1 (Fla.1983), in which this Court had construed section 775.087, Florida Statutes, was applicable to Bass. Bass had previously been sentenced ......
  • State v. Smith, Nos. 72633
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • June 22, 1989
    ...impose a punishment that has not plainly and unmistakably been authorized by the legislature. Carawan, 515 So.2d at 165; Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1, 3 (Fla.1983); Ferguson v. State, 377 So.2d 709 (Fla.1979); State v. Wershow, 343 So.2d 605, 608 (Fla.1977); Ex Parte Amos, 93 Fla. 5, 112 So......
  • Connolly v. State, No. 3D09–280.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • July 29, 2015
    ...offense while in the possession of a firearm....” Id. at 913.46 The defendant in Junco relied for its argument upon Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1 (Fla.1983) and its progeny.47 The State in Junco relied for its argument upon State v. Enmund, 476 So.2d 165 (Fla.1985), State v. Thomas, 487 So.2......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
144 cases
  • Carawan v. State, No. 69384
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • September 3, 1987
    ...its terms.' " State v. Wershow, 343 So.2d 605, 608 (Fla.1977), quoting Ex Parte Amos, 93 Fla. 5, 112 So. 289 (1927). Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1, 3 We move now to consider the interrelationship of these rules of construction. We begin with the area of multiple-punishments law that has caus......
  • Bunkley v. State, No. SC01-297.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • May 27, 2004
    ...1987), withdrawn, 530 So.2d 282 (Fla.1988), this Court rendered an initial opinion as to whether this Court's decision in Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1 (Fla.1983), in which this Court had construed section 775.087, Florida Statutes, was applicable to Bass. Bass had previously been sentenced ......
  • State v. Smith, Nos. 72633
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • June 22, 1989
    ...impose a punishment that has not plainly and unmistakably been authorized by the legislature. Carawan, 515 So.2d at 165; Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1, 3 (Fla.1983); Ferguson v. State, 377 So.2d 709 (Fla.1979); State v. Wershow, 343 So.2d 605, 608 (Fla.1977); Ex Parte Amos, 93 Fla. 5, 112 So......
  • Connolly v. State, No. 3D09–280.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • July 29, 2015
    ...offense while in the possession of a firearm....” Id. at 913.46 The defendant in Junco relied for its argument upon Palmer v. State, 438 So.2d 1 (Fla.1983) and its progeny.47 The State in Junco relied for its argument upon State v. Enmund, 476 So.2d 165 (Fla.1985), State v. Thomas, 487 So.2......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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