2005 Florida Code - CRIMES OBSTRUCTING JUSTICEChapter 843

CHAPTER 843

OBSTRUCTING JUSTICE

843.01  Resisting officer with violence to his or her person.

843.02  Resisting officer without violence to his or her person.

843.021  Unlawful possession of a concealed handcuff key.

843.025  Depriving officer of means of protection or communication.

843.03  Obstruction by disguised person.

843.04  Refusing to assist prison officers in arresting escaped convicts.

843.05  Resisting timber agent.

843.06  Neglect or refusal to aid peace officers.

843.08  Falsely personating officer, etc.

843.081  Prohibited use of certain lights; penalty.

843.085  Unlawful use of police badges or other indicia of authority.

843.0855  Criminal actions under color of law or through use of simulated legal process.

843.09  Escape through voluntary action of officer.

843.10  Escape by negligence of officer.

843.11  Conveying tools into jail to aid escape; forcible rescue.

843.12  Aiding escape.

843.13  Aiding escape of juvenile inmates of correctional institutions.

843.14  Compounding felony.

843.15  Failure of defendant on bail to appear.

843.16  Unlawful to install or transport radio equipment using assigned frequency of state or law enforcement officers; definitions; exceptions; penalties.

843.165  Unauthorized transmissions to and interference with governmental and associated radio frequencies prohibited; penalties; exceptions.

843.167  Unlawful use of police communications; enhanced penalties.

843.17  Publishing name and address of law enforcement officer.

843.18  Boats; fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer.

843.19  Offenses against police dogs, fire dogs, SAR dogs, or police horses.

843.20  Harassment of participant of neighborhood crime watch program prohibited; penalty; definitions.

843.01  Resisting officer with violence to his or her person.--Whoever knowingly and willfully resists, obstructs, or opposes any officer as defined in s. 943.10(1), (2), (3), (6), (7), (8), or (9); member of the Parole Commission or any administrative aide or supervisor employed by the commission; parole and probation supervisor; county probation officer; personnel or representative of the Department of Law Enforcement; or other person legally authorized to execute process in the execution of legal process or in the lawful execution of any legal duty, by offering or doing violence to the person of such officer or legally authorized person, is guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

History.--s. 1, ch. 3276, 1881; RS 2580; GS 3500; RGS 5385; CGL 7524; s. 1, ch. 28118, 1953; s. 1, ch. 61-66; s. 1, ch. 63-234; s. 1, ch. 63-433; ss. 1, chs. 65-198, 65-226; s. 3, ch. 67-2207; ss. 20, 25, 33, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1034, ch. 71-136; s. 32, ch. 73-334; s. 1, ch. 77-174; s. 1, ch. 78-116; s. 20, ch. 79-3; s. 26, ch. 79-8; s. 1, ch. 79-149; s. 5, ch. 85-87; s. 40, ch. 88-122; s. 1, ch. 88-373; s. 50, ch. 88-381; s. 43, ch. 89-526.

843.02  Resisting officer without violence to his or her person.--Whoever shall resist, obstruct, or oppose any officer as defined in s. 943.10(1), (2), (3), (6), (7), (8), or (9); member of the Parole Commission or any administrative aide or supervisor employed by the commission; county probation officer; parole and probation supervisor; personnel or representative of the Department of Law Enforcement; or other person legally authorized to execute process in the execution of legal process or in the lawful execution of any legal duty, without offering or doing violence to the person of the officer, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 2, ch. 3276, 1881; RS 2581; GS 3501; RGS 5386; CGL 7525; s. 1, ch. 63-433; s. 1, ch. 65-226; s. 3, ch. 67-2207; ss. 20, 33, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1035, ch. 71-136; s. 1, ch. 77-174; s. 2, ch. 78-116; s. 21, ch. 79-3; s. 27, ch. 79-8; s. 6, ch. 85-87; s. 41, ch. 88-122; s. 2, ch. 88-373; s. 51, ch. 88-381; s. 43, ch. 89-526; s. 209, ch. 91-224.

843.021  Unlawful possession of a concealed handcuff key.--

(1)  As used in this section, the term:

(a)  "In custody" means any time while a person has been placed in handcuffs by a law enforcement officer, regardless of whether such person is under formal arrest.

(b)  "Handcuff key" means any key, tool, device, implement, or other thing used, designed, or intended to aid in unlocking or removing handcuffs.

(c)  "Concealed handcuff key" means any handcuff key carried by a person in a manner that indicates an intent to prevent discovery of the key by a law enforcement officer, including, but not limited to, a handcuff key carried:

1.  In a pocket of a piece of clothing of a person, and unconnected to any key ring;

2.  On a necklace of a person;

3.  On the body part of a person or on any item of clothing of such person, when the handcuff key is secured on the body part or item of clothing by use of tape, glue, line, or other material;

4.  In or within any compartment, seam, fold, or other encasement within any item of clothing, belt, shoe, or jewelry of a person;

5.  In or within any sock, hose, shoe, belt, undergarment, glove, hat, or similar item of clothing or accessory of a person;

6.  By a person and disguised as jewelry or other object; or

7.  In or within any body cavity of a person.

(2)  Any person who possesses a concealed handcuff key commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(3)  It is a defense to a charge of violating this section that, immediately upon being placed in custody, the person in custody actually and effectively disclosed to the law enforcement officer that he or she was in possession of a concealed handcuff key.

(4)(a)  It is a defense to a charge of violating this section that the person in custody and in possession of a concealed handcuff key is:

1.  A federal, state, or local law enforcement officer, including a reserve or auxiliary officer, a licensed security officer, or a private investigator as defined in s. 493.6101; or

2.  A professional bail bond agent, temporary bail bond agent, runner, or limited surety agent as defined in s. 648.25.

(b)  However, the defense is not available to any officer, investigator, agent, or runner listed in this subsection if the officer, investigator, agent, or runner, immediately upon being placed in custody, fails to actually and effectively disclose possession of the concealed handcuff key.

History.--s. 1, ch. 2000-230.

843.025  Depriving officer of means of protection or communication.--It is unlawful for any person to deprive a law enforcement officer as defined in s. 943.10(1), a correctional officer as defined in s. 943.10(2), or a correctional probation officer as defined in s. 943.10(3) of her or his weapon or radio or to otherwise deprive the officer of the means to defend herself or himself or summon assistance. Any person who violates this section is guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

History.--s. 2, ch. 84-187; s. 2, ch. 92-52; s. 1335, ch. 97-102.

843.03  Obstruction by disguised person.--Whoever in any manner disguises himself or herself with intent to obstruct the due execution of the law, or with the intent to intimidate, hinder, or interrupt any officer, beverage enforcement agent, or other person in the legal performance of his or her duty or the exercise of his or her rights under the constitution or laws of this state, whether such intent is effected or not, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 19, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2582; GS 3502; RGS 5387; CGL 7526; s. 1, ch. 63-433; s. 1036, ch. 71-136; s. 1336, ch. 97-102.

843.04  Refusing to assist prison officers in arresting escaped convicts.--

(1)  All prison officers and correctional officers shall immediately arrest any convict, held under the provisions of law, who may have escaped. Any such officer or guard may call upon the sheriff or other officer of the state, or of any county or municipal corporation, or any citizen, to make search and arrest such convict.

(2)  Any officer or citizen refusing to assist shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 17, ch. 6530, 1917; RGS 5389; CGL 7528; s. 1037, ch. 71-136; s. 8, ch. 95-283.

843.05  Resisting timber agent.--Whoever obstructs, resists, or opposes a timber agent in the discharge of her or his duties, or attempts so to do, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.083.

History.--s. 5, ch. 3020, 1877; RS 2584; GS 3504; RGS 5390; CGL 7529; s. 1038, ch. 71-136; s. 1337, ch. 97-102.

843.06  Neglect or refusal to aid peace officers.--Whoever, being required in the name of the state by any officer of the Florida Highway Patrol, police officer, beverage enforcement agent, or watchman, neglects or refuses to assist him or her in the execution of his or her office in a criminal case, or in the preservation of the peace, or the apprehending or securing of any person for a breach of the peace, or in case of the rescue or escape of a person arrested upon civil process, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 16, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2585; GS 3505; RGS 5391; CGL 7530; s. 2, ch. 28118, 1953; s. 1, ch. 63-433; s. 1039, ch. 71-136; s. 32, ch. 73-334; s. 1338, ch. 97-102.

843.08  Falsely personating officer, etc.--A person who falsely assumes or pretends to be a sheriff, officer of the Florida Highway Patrol, officer of the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, officer of the Department of Environmental Protection, officer of the Department of Transportation, officer of the Department of Corrections, correctional probation officer, deputy sheriff, state attorney or assistant state attorney, statewide prosecutor or assistant statewide prosecutor, state attorney investigator, coroner, police officer, lottery special agent or lottery investigator, beverage enforcement agent, or watchman, or any member of the Parole Commission and any administrative aide or supervisor employed by the commission, or any personnel or representative of the Department of Law Enforcement, and takes upon himself or herself to act as such, or to require any other person to aid or assist him or her in a matter pertaining to the duty of any such officer, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084; however, a person who falsely personates any such officer during the course of the commission of a felony commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084; except that if the commission of the felony results in the death or personal injury of another human being, the person commits a felony of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

History.--s. 18, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2587; GS 3507; RGS 5395; CGL 7535; s. 3, ch. 28118, 1953; s. 1, ch. 63-433; ss. 1, chs. 65-148, 65-199; s. 3, ch. 67-2207; ss. 20, 25, 33, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1041, ch. 71-136; s. 32, ch. 73-334; s. 1, ch. 77-174; s. 28, ch. 79-8; s. 42, ch. 88-122; s. 1, ch. 88-339; s. 8, ch. 89-208; s. 475, ch. 94-356; s. 65, ch. 95-257; s. 9, ch. 95-283; s. 3, ch. 96-256; s. 232, ch. 99-245.

843.081  Prohibited use of certain lights; penalty.--

(1)  The Legislature finds and declares that Florida's citizens are vulnerable to becoming the victims of criminal acts through the illegal use of blue lights by the criminal elements. It is the intent of the Legislature to reduce this vulnerability to injury and loss of life and property by prohibiting the use of certain blue lights by any person other than an authorized law enforcement officer.

(2)  It is unlawful for a person to use in or on any nongovernmentally owned vehicle or vessel any flashing or rotating blue light unless such person is a law enforcement officer employed by a federal, state, county, or city law enforcement agency or is a person appointed by the Governor pursuant to chapter 354.

(3)  The provisions of this section shall not apply to salespersons, service representatives, or other employees of businesses licensed to sell or repair law enforcement equipment.

(4)  For the purposes of this section, the term "flashing or rotating blue light" includes all forms of lights which display a blue light source or which were designed with the intent of displaying a blue light source whether or not such light is actually in use.

(5)  Any person who violates any of the provisions of this section commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 2, ch. 91-163; s. 1, ch. 94-103; s. 1339, ch. 97-102.

843.085  Unlawful use of police badges or other indicia of authority.--It is unlawful for any person:

(1)  Unless appointed by the Governor pursuant to chapter 354, authorized by the appropriate agency, or displayed in a closed or mounted case as a collection or exhibit, to wear or display any authorized indicia of authority, including any badge, insignia, emblem, identification card, or uniform, or any colorable imitation thereof, of any federal, state, county, or municipal law enforcement agency, or other criminal justice agency as now or hereafter defined in s. 943.045, which could deceive a reasonable person into believing that such item is authorized by any of the agencies described above for use by the person displaying or wearing it, or which displays in any manner or combination the word or words "police," "patrolman," "agent," "sheriff," "deputy," "trooper," "highway patrol," "Wildlife Officer," "Marine Patrol Officer," "state attorney," "public defender," "marshal," "constable," or "bailiff," which could deceive a reasonable person into believing that such item is authorized by any of the agencies described above for use by the person displaying or wearing it.

(2)  To own or operate a motor vehicle marked or identified in any manner or combination by the word or words "police," "patrolman," "sheriff," "deputy," "trooper," "highway patrol," "Wildlife Officer," "Marine Patrol Officer," "marshal," "constable," or "bailiff," or by any lettering, marking, or insignia, or colorable imitation thereof, including, but not limited to, stars, badges, or shields, officially used to identify the vehicle as a federal, state, county, or municipal law enforcement vehicle or a vehicle used by a criminal justice agency as now or hereafter defined in s. 943.045, which could deceive a reasonable person into believing that such vehicle is authorized by any of the agencies described above for use by the person operating the motor vehicle, unless such vehicle is owned or operated by the appropriate agency and its use is authorized by such agency, or the local law enforcement agency authorizes the use of such vehicle or unless the person is appointed by the Governor pursuant to chapter 354.

(3)  To sell, transfer, or give away the authorized badge, or colorable imitation thereof, including miniatures, of any criminal justice agency as now or hereafter defined in s. 943.045, or bearing in any manner or combination the word or words "police," "patrolman," "sheriff," "deputy," "trooper," "highway patrol," "Wildlife Officer," "Marine Patrol Officer," "marshal," "constable," "agent," "state attorney," "public defender," or "bailiff," which could deceive a reasonable person into believing that such item is authorized by any of the agencies described above, except for agency purchases or upon the presentation and recordation of both a driver's license and other identification showing any transferee to actually be a member of such criminal justice agency or unless the person is appointed by the Governor pursuant to chapter 354. A transferor of an item covered by this subsection is required to maintain for 2 years a written record of such transaction, including records showing compliance with this subsection, and if such transferor is a business, it shall make such records available during normal business hours for inspection by any law enforcement agency having jurisdiction in the area where the business is located.

(4)  Nothing in this section shall prohibit a fraternal, benevolent, or labor organization or association, or their chapters or subsidiaries, from using the following words, in any manner or in any combination, if those words appear in the official name of the organization or association:  "police," "patrolman," "sheriff," "deputy," "trooper," "highway patrol," "Wildlife Officer," "Marine Patrol Officer," "marshal," "constable," or "bailiff."

(5)  Violation of any provision of this section is a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. This section is cumulative to any law now in force in the state.

History.--s. 1, ch. 91-163; s. 2, ch. 94-103.

843.0855  Criminal actions under color of law or through use of simulated legal process.--

(1)  As used in this section:

(a)  The term "legal process" means a document or order issued by a court or filed or recorded for the purpose of exercising jurisdiction or representing a claim against a person or property, or for the purpose of directing a person to appear before a court or tribunal, or to perform or refrain from performing a specified act. "Legal process" includes, but is not limited to, a summons, lien, complaint, warrant, injunction, writ, notice, pleading, subpoena, or order.

(b)  The term "person" means an individual, public or private group incorporated or otherwise, legitimate or illegitimate legal tribunal or entity, informal organization, official or unofficial agency or body, or any assemblage of individuals.

(c)  The term "public officer" means a public officer as defined by s. 112.061.

(d)  The term "public employee" means a public employee as defined by s. 112.061.

(2)  Any person who deliberately impersonates or falsely acts as a public officer or tribunal, public employee or utility employee, including, but not limited to, marshals, judges, prosecutors, sheriffs, deputies, court personnel, or any law enforcement authority in connection with or relating to any legal process affecting persons and property, or otherwise takes any action under color of law against persons or property, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(3)  Any person who simulates legal process, including, but not limited to, actions affecting title to real estate or personal property, indictments, subpoenas, warrants, injunctions, liens, orders, judgments, or any legal documents or proceedings, knowing or having reason to know the contents of any such documents or proceedings or the basis for any action to be fraudulent, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(4)  Any person who falsely under color of law attempts in any way to influence, intimidate, or hinder a public officer or law enforcement officer in the discharge of his or her official duties by means of, but not limited to, threats of or actual physical abuse or harassment, or through the use of simulated legal process, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(5)(a)  Nothing in this section shall make unlawful any act of any law enforcement officer or legal tribunal which is performed under lawful authority.

(b)  Nothing in this section shall prohibit individuals from assembling freely to express opinions or designate group affiliation or association.

(c)  Nothing in this section shall prohibit or in any way limit a person's lawful and legitimate access to the courts or prevent a person from instituting or responding to legitimate and lawful legal process.

History.--s. 1, ch. 97-203.

843.09  Escape through voluntary action of officer.--If a jailer or other officer voluntarily suffers a prisoner in her or his custody, upon conviction of any criminal charge, to escape, she or he shall be guilty of a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

History.--s. 13, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2588; GS 3509; RGS 5395; CGL 7535; s. 1042, ch. 71-136; s. 1340, ch. 97-102.

843.10  Escape by negligence of officer.--If a jailer or other officer, through negligence, suffers a prisoner in her or his custody upon conviction of any criminal charge to escape, she or he shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 14, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2589; GS 3510; RGS 5396; CGL 7536; s. 1043, ch. 71-136; s. 1341, ch. 97-102.

843.11  Conveying tools into jail to aid escape; forcible rescue.--Whoever conveys into a jail or other like place of confinement, any disguise, instrument, tool, weapon, or other thing adapted or useful to aid a prisoner in making his or her escape, with intent to facilitate the escape of any prisoner there lawfully committed or detained, or, by any means whatever, aids or assists such prisoner in his or her endeavors to escape therefrom, whether such escape is effected or attempted or not; and whoever forcibly rescues any prisoner held in custody upon any conviction or charge of an offense, shall be guilty of a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084; or if the person whose escape or rescue was effected or intended, was charged with an offense not capital nor punishable by imprisonment in the state prison, then a person who assists a prisoner as described in this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083; or if the prisoner while his or her escape or rescue is being effected or attempted commits any crime with the weapon, tool, or instrument conveyed to him or her, the person conveying the weapon, tool, or instrument to the prisoner shall be subject to whatever fine, imprisonment, or other punishment the law imposes for the crime committed, as an accessory before the fact.

History.--s. 11, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2590; GS 3511; RGS 5397; CGL 7537; s. 1, ch. 29895, 1955; s. 1044, ch. 71-136; s. 1342, ch. 97-102.

843.12  Aiding escape.--Whoever knowingly aids or assists a person in escaping, attempting to escape, or who has escaped, from an officer or person who has or is entitled to the lawful custody of such person, is guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

History.--s. 12, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2591; s. 1, ch. 5154, 1903; GS 3512; RGS 5398; CGL 7538; s. 1, ch. 65-221; s. 1045, ch. 71-136.

843.13  Aiding escape of juvenile inmates of correctional institutions.--Whoever in any manner knowingly aids or assists any inmate of any correctional institution for boys or girls in the state to escape therefrom, or who knowingly, or having good reason to believe that any person is an inmate of such schools and is escaping or attempting to escape therefrom, aids or assists such inmate to make his or her escape or to avoid detention or recapture, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 1, ch. 9138, 1923; CGL 7539; s. 1, ch. 63-128; s. 1046, ch. 71-136; s. 1343, ch. 97-102.

843.14  Compounding felony.--Whoever, having knowledge of the commission of an offense punishable with death or by imprisonment in the state prison, takes money or a gratuity or reward, or an engagement therefor, upon an agreement or understanding, expressed or implied, to compound or conceal such offense, or not to prosecute therefor, or not to give evidence thereof, shall when such offense of which he or she has knowledge is punishable with death or imprisonment in the state prison for life, be guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084; and where the offense of which he or she so had knowledge was punishable in any other manner, he or she shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 20, ch. 1637, 1868; RS 2592; GS 3513; RGS 5399; CGL 7540; s. 1047, ch. 71-136; s. 1344, ch. 97-102.

843.15  Failure of defendant on bail to appear.--

(1)  Whoever, having been released pursuant to chapter 903, willfully fails to appear before any court or judicial officer as required shall incur a forfeiture of any security which was given or pledged for her or his release and, in addition, shall:

(a)  If she or he was released in connection with a charge of felony or while awaiting sentence or pending review by certiorari after conviction of any offense, be guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084, or;

(b)  If she or he was released in connection with a charge of misdemeanor, be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(2)  Nothing in this section shall interfere with or prevent the exercise by any court of its power to punish for contempt.

History.--ss. 1, 2, ch. 8468, 1921; CGL 7545, 7546; s. 1, ch. 69-152; s. 1048, ch. 71-136; s. 1345, ch. 97-102.

843.16  Unlawful to install or transport radio equipment using assigned frequency of state or law enforcement officers; definitions; exceptions; penalties.--

(1)  A person, firm, or corporation may not install or transport in any motor vehicle or business establishment, except an emergency vehicle or crime watch vehicle as herein defined or a place established by municipal, county, state, or federal authority for governmental purposes, any frequency modulation radio receiving equipment so adjusted or tuned as to receive messages or signals on frequencies assigned by the Federal Communications Commission to police or law enforcement officers or fire rescue personnel of any city or county of the state or to the state or any of its agencies. Provided, nothing herein shall be construed to affect any radio station licensed by the Federal Communications System or to affect any recognized newspaper or news publication engaged in covering the news on a full-time basis or any alarm system contractor certified pursuant to part II of chapter 489, operating a central monitoring system.

(2)  As used in this section, the term:

(a)  "Emergency vehicle" shall specifically mean:

1.  Any motor vehicle used by any law enforcement officer or employee of any city, any county, the state, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, or the Armed Forces of the United States while on official business;

2.  Any fire department vehicle of any city or county of the state or any state fire department vehicle;

3.  Any motor vehicle designated as an emergency vehicle by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles when said vehicle is to be assigned the use of frequencies assigned to the state;

4.  Any motor vehicle designated as an emergency vehicle by the sheriff or fire chief of any county in the state when said vehicle is to be assigned the use of frequencies assigned to the said county;

5.  Any motor vehicle designated as an emergency vehicle by the chief of police or fire chief of any city in the state when said vehicle is to be assigned the use of frequencies assigned to the said city.

(b)  "Crime watch vehicle" means any motor vehicle used by any person participating in a citizen crime watch or neighborhood watch program when such program and use are approved in writing by the appropriate sheriff or chief of police where the vehicle will be used and the vehicle is assigned the use of frequencies assigned to the county or city. Such approval shall be renewed annually.

(3)  This section shall not apply to any holder of a valid amateur radio operator or station license issued by the Federal Communications Commission or to any recognized newspaper or news publication engaged in covering the news on a full-time basis or any alarm system contractor certified pursuant to part II of chapter 489, operating a central monitoring system.

(4)  Any person, firm, or corporation violating any of the provisions of this section commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--ss. 1-4, ch. 26886, 1951; ss. 24, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1049, ch. 71-136; s. 1, ch. 86-55; s. 1, ch. 90-62; s. 95, ch. 2005-164.

843.165  Unauthorized transmissions to and interference with governmental and associated radio frequencies prohibited; penalties; exceptions.--

(1)  A person may not transmit or cause to be transmitted over any radio frequency with knowledge that such frequency is assigned by the Federal Communications Commission to a state, county, or municipal governmental agency or water management district, including, but not limited to, a law enforcement, fire, government administration, or emergency management agency or any public or private emergency medical services provider, any sounds, jamming device, jamming transmissions, speech, or radio frequency carrier wave except: those persons who are authorized in writing to do so by the agency's chief administrator; employees of the agency who are authorized to transmit by virtue of their duties with the agency; and those persons holding a valid station license assigned by the Federal Communications Commission to transmit on such frequencies.

(2)  A person may not knowingly obstruct, jam, or interfere with radio transmissions made by volunteer communications personnel of any state, county, or municipal governmental agency, water management district, volunteers of any public or private emergency medical services provider, or volunteers in any established Skywarn program when the volunteers are providing communications support upon request of the governmental agency during tests, drills, field operations, or emergency events.

(3)  Any person who violates this section commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(4)  It is lawful for any person to transmit or cause to be transmitted speech or sounds over any authorized transmitter operating on frequencies specified in subsection (1) when the person:

(a)  Has been commanded to do so by an authorized operator of the transmitter;

(b)  Is acting to summon assistance for the authorized operator who, for any reason, is unable to make the transmission; or

(c)  Is a radio technician or installer who is testing, repairing, or installing radio equipment at the request of a state, county, or municipal governmental agency, water management district, or licensed public or private emergency medical services provider.

History.--s. 1, ch. 79-63; s. 210, ch. 91-224; s. 1, ch. 99-365.

843.167  Unlawful use of police communications; enhanced penalties.--

(1)  A person may not:

(a)  Intercept any police radio communication by use of a scanner or any other means for the purpose of using that communication to assist in committing a crime or to escape from or avoid detection, arrest, trial, conviction, or punishment in connection with the commission of such crime.

(b)  Divulge the existence, contents, substance, purport, effect, or meaning of a police radio communication to any person he or she knows to be a suspect in the commission of a crime with the intent that the suspect may escape from or avoid detention, arrest, trial, conviction, or punishment.

(2)  Any person who is charged with a crime and who, during the time such crime was committed, possessed or used a police scanner or similar device capable of receiving police radio transmissions is presumed to have violated paragraph (1)(a).

(3)  The penalty for a crime that is committed by a person who violates paragraph (1)(a) shall be enhanced as follows:

(a)  A misdemeanor of the second degree shall be punished as if it were a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(b)  A misdemeanor of the first degree shall be punished as if it were a felony of the third degree.

(c)  A felony of the third degree shall be punished as if it were a felony of the second degree.

(d)  A felony of the second degree shall be punished as if it were a felony of the first degree.

(e)  A felony of the first degree shall be punished as if it were a life felony.

(4)  Any person who violates paragraph (1)(b) commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 8, ch. 2001-127.

843.17  Publishing name and address of law enforcement officer.--Any person who shall maliciously, with intent to obstruct the due execution of the law or with the intent to intimidate, hinder, or interrupt any law enforcement officer in the legal performance of his or her duties, publish or disseminate the residence address or telephone number of any law enforcement officer while designating the officer as such, without authorization of the agency which employs the officer, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 1, ch. 72-85; s. 1346, ch. 97-102.

843.18  Boats; fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer.--

(1)  It is unlawful for the operator of any boat plying the waters of the state, having knowledge that she or he has been directed to stop such vessel by a duly authorized law enforcement officer, willfully to refuse or fail to stop in compliance with such directive or, having stopped in knowing compliance with such a directive, willfully to flee in an attempt to elude such officer. Any person violating this section is guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(2)  Any violation of this section with respect to any vessel shall constitute such vessel as contraband which may be seized by a law enforcement agency and which shall be subject to forfeiture pursuant to ss. 932.701-932.704.

History.--s. 1, ch. 80-160; s. 1, ch. 82-210; s. 29, ch. 87-243; s. 11, ch. 87-392; s. 1347, ch. 97-102.

1843.19  Offenses against police dogs, fire dogs, SAR dogs, or police horses.--

(1)  As used in this section, the term:

(a)  "Police dog" means any dog, and "police horse" means any horse, that is owned, or the service of which is employed, by a law enforcement agency for the principal purpose of aiding in the detection of criminal activity, enforcement of laws, or apprehension of offenders.

(b)  "Fire dog" means any dog that is owned, or the service of which is employed, by a fire department, a special fire district, or the State Fire Marshal for the principal purpose of aiding in the detection of flammable materials or the investigation of fires.

(c)  "SAR dog" means any search and rescue dog that is owned, or the service of which is utilized, by a fire department, a law enforcement agency, a special fire district, or the State Fire Marshal for the principal purpose of aiding in the detection of missing persons, including, but not limited to, persons who are lost, who are trapped under debris as the result of a natural, manmade, or technological disaster, or who are drowning victims.

(2)  Any person who intentionally and knowingly, without lawful cause or justification, causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or death to, or uses a deadly weapon upon, a police dog, fire dog, SAR dog, or police horse commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(3)  Any person who actually and intentionally maliciously touches, strikes, or causes bodily harm to a police dog, fire dog, SAR dog, or police horse commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(4)  Any person who intentionally or knowingly maliciously harasses, teases, interferes with, or attempts to interfere with a police dog, fire dog, SAR dog, or police horse while the animal is in the performance of its duties commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(5)  A person convicted of an offense under this section shall make restitution for injuries caused to the police dog, fire dog, SAR dog, or police horse and shall pay the replacement cost of the animal if, as a result of the offense, the animal can no longer perform its duties.

History.--s. 1, ch. 81-43; s. 1, ch. 84-187; s. 2, ch. 93-20; s. 2, ch. 97-61; s. 1, ch. 2005-139.

1Note.--Section 2, ch. 2005-139, provides that "[t]his act shall take effect October 1, 2005, and shall apply to offenses occurring on or after that date."

843.20  Harassment of participant of neighborhood crime watch program prohibited; penalty; definitions.--

(1)  It shall be a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, for any person to willfully harass, threaten, or intimidate an identifiable member of a neighborhood crime watch program while such member is engaged in, or traveling to or from, an organized neighborhood crime watch program activity or a member who is participating in an ongoing criminal investigation, as designated by a law enforcement officer.

(2)  As used in this section, the term:

(a)  "Harass" means to engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person which causes substantial emotional distress in that person and serves no legitimate purpose.

(b)  "Organized neighborhood crime watch program activity" means any prearranged event, meeting, or other scheduled activity, or neighborhood patrol, conducted by or at the direction of a neighborhood crime watch program or the program's authorized designee.

History.--s. 2, ch. 2004-18.
Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. Florida may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.