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IS THERE A FLORIDA STATUTE FOR "PRESUMPTION OF INNOCENCE" JUST LIKE TEXAS HAS??? Does Florida have any similar statute??

Orlando, FL |

Art. 38.03. [705] [785] [765] PRESUMPTION OF INNOCENCE. All
persons are presumed to be innocent and no person may be convicted
of an offense unless each element of the offense is proved beyond a
reasonable doubt. The fact that he has been arrested, confined, or
indicted for, or otherwise charged with, the offense gives rise to
no inference of guilt at his trial. Does Florida have any similar statute??

Attorney Answers 5


  1. Best answer

    This sounds more like a jury instruction. There is no need to have this set forth in a statute, it is a basic requirement of all criminal law cases. I am not aware of such a statute in Florida.

    ***Please be sure to mark if you find the answer "helpful" or a "best" answer. Thank you! I hope this helps. ******


  2. I am sure that it does & even if not, it is basic that the burder of proof in a criminal matter is that you are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. That burder is much higher than in civil matters.

    This is not intended to be legal advise or as legal representation. I am a California personal injury attorney . Be aware that every state has its own statute of limitations; and statutes & case laws that govern the handling of these matters.


  3. You will find language similar to this in the jury instructions every Judge in Florida must read to every jury before they deliberate. The real question is, "What is reasonable doubt?" There is a different definition in every state, and none of them are very clear. Framing the definition is often key to winning the case.

    For more information or to set up a free consultation contact the Witt Law at 407-205-WITT (9488). This answer does not, nor is it intended to, create an attorney-client relationship. It is offered for informational purposes only. Please consult with a licensed attorney before making any legal decisions.


  4. I don't know anything about Texas Law, but, unlike the U.S. Constitution (which does guarantee a presumption of innocence), the Constitution of the State of Florida does not explicitly guarantee you a presumption of innocence, nor is there a per se statute in Florida providing for the same. Florida is explicitly bound to follow the U.S. Constitution however, and, as my colleagues have aptly pointed out, Florida's Standard Criminal Jury Instructions speak both loudly and clearly on the presumption of innocence.

    You may want to Google the Standard Jury Instruction in Criminal Cases , which are mandatorily read to every jury in every criminal case in the State of Florida. 2.1 - Preliminary Instructions states "... At no time is it the duty of the defendant to prove [his] [her] innocence... a jury is not permitted to to draw any inference of guilt..." Also, 3.7 - Plea of Nor Guilty, Reasonable Doubt and Burden of Proof states that "...The defendant has entered a plea of not guilty. This means that you must presume or believe the defendant is innocent. the presumption stays with the defendant as to each material allegation in the [information] [indictment] through each stage of the trial unless it has been overcome by the evidence to the exclusion of and beyond a reasonable doubt. To overcome the defendant's presumption of innocence, the state has the burden of proving the crime with which the defendant was charged was committed and the defendant is the person who committed the crime..."

    I hope that this was helpful.

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