Do Juveniles Sentenced As Adults In Criminal Court Have Rights Similar to Adults ?

The court, in T.M.B. v. State, 716 So. 2d 269 (Fla. 1998), held that the preservation requirements of section 924.051 of the Criminal Appeal Reform Act are inapplicable to juvenile proceedings. The district court reasoned thusly: It is our view that the imposition of adult sanctions pursuant to 39.059(7) on a child prosecuted as an adult is not strictly a juvenile proceeding. It is in the nature of a hybrid procedure. Although the requirements of section 39.059(7) must still be met, it must be remembered that the juvenile is being sentenced as an adult in criminal court. In J.M.J. v. State, [742 So. 2d 261] (Fla. 1st DCA 1997), [approved 716 So. 2d 269 (Fla. 1998)], this court noted that there are important procedural differences between juvenile delinquency proceedings and the procedure applicable in adult criminal matters. For example, juveniles sentenced as such in delinquency proceedings do not have the opportunity to correct sentencing errors in a procedure comparable to that in amended Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.800(b), and there is no collateral review procedure afforded in delinquency proceedings similar to the procedure afforded adults under Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.850. Id. Such is not the case for juveniles sentenced as adults. Accordingly, we hold that provisions of section 924.051, which require the preservation of issues for appeal, apply to the sentencing process by which juveniles are sentenced as adults. The application of section 924.051 to the procedure whereby a juvenile is sentenced as an adult does not obviate the right to appeal guaranteed in section 39.059(7), it merely requires that any such error be preserved as explained below. To afford criminal defendants an opportunity to preserve sentencing errors, such as the lower court's error in the instant case of failing to enter a written order, the supreme court amended Fla. R. Crim. P. 3.800, effective on the day appellant herein was sentenced as noted in footnote 2. Amendments to Fla. R. App. P. 9020(g) and Fla. R. Crim. P. 3.800, 675 So. 2d 1374, 1375 (Fla. 1996). The Court Commentary accompanying this amendment states the following: Subdivision (b) was added and existing subdivision (b) was renumbered as subdivision (c) in order to authorize the filing of a motion to correct a sentence or order of probation, thereby providing a vehicle to correct sentencing errors in the trial court and to preserve the issue should the motion be denied. A motion filed under subdivision (b) is an authorized motion which tolls the time for filing the notice of appeal. the presence of a defendant who is represented by counsel would not be required at the hearing on the disposition of such motion if it only involved a question of law. Fla. R. Crim. P. 3.800. As noted above, a juvenile sentenced as a juvenile in delinquency proceedings is not afforded this opportunity to preserve error, but a juvenile sentenced as an adult in criminal proceedings is not only required to preserve error for review under the Criminal Appeal Reform Act, but pursuant to Rule 3.800(b), he or she is afforded the opportunity to do so. Because appellant in the case at bar was sentenced as an adult after the July 1, 1996, effective date of the Criminal Appeal Reform Act, he had the opportunity pursuant to Rule 3.800(b) to preserve error on appeal here, but he did not. As a result, this issue is not subject to appellate review.