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Carjacking is a serious crime in Florida and if convicted, you could face serios jail time and fines. If you have been arrested for this crime, do not hesitate to call us. We are experienced criminal defense lawyers who are ready to defend you against allegations.

Carjacking—or hijacking a motor vehicle—is a form of theft that includes the threat or use of force to take one type of property. The intent by the perpetrator is to deprive the owner or occupant of the use of the vehicle temporarily or permanently. If a gun was brandished as part of the threat, a carjacking suspect will likely receive added charges for the use of a firearm while committing the crime.

If you have been accused of a crime, Farkas & Crowley is a comprehensive criminal defense firm that can help with your defense. We can meet with you immediately to discuss your case and begin building your defense. Our commitment to protecting your rights includes working on your behalf for the best possible outcome. Call us at (561)-444-9529 24/7.

Carjacking Penalties

Florida statute, F.S. 812.133, describes the crime of carjacking. As a first-degree felony, it is a Level 7 offense, even for first-time offenders without prior arrest records. A person who is found guilty of carjacking can face a maximum prison sentence of 30 years and potential fines reaching $10,000.

Under Florida law, individuals found guilty of carjacking must serve a mandatory minimum prison term of 21 months, assuming the absence of firearm or other weapon usage and no resulting injuries to anyone involved. Use of a weapon or causing injuries during the commision may result in it becoming a level 9 offense with a potential for life in prison.

Florida's 10-20-Life Statute

This is the common name for Florida Statute 775.087, which sets out mandatory minimum sentencing when there is the inclusion (possession or use) of a weapon during certain offenses including carjacking. The minimums are:

Ten years minimum for possessing a firearm during the commission of a violent crime, even if the weapon is never shown or used

Twenty years minimum for possession and discharge of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime

Twenty-five years minimum to life imprisonment if the discharge of the firearm led to physical injuries or the death of a person

 Farkas and Crowley can defend against the 10-20-Life statute.

Possible Defenses Against Carjacking Charges

Because carjacking is a serious offence with harsh consequences, a Florida carjacking defense attorney will work to defend you by defeating the prosecutor’s case. He or she will gather evidence and investigate the case, and look for defects in the case against you, such as:

• Lack of evidence

• Lack of force/fear

• Misidentification of the defendant

• Lack of intent to steal

• Consent by the owner to use the motor vehicle

• Duress or coercion; that is, if the accused was forced to commit the carjacking by another party

• Afterthought, where carjacking was not the original intent but done after another action

• Presence, where the carjacking was committed by one person and others were in the vicinity

• Rightful ownership of the vehicle

Every case is different, and our attorneys will examine all facts in the case to construct the best defense for your individual case.

Carjacking Vs. Grand Theft Auto

Both charges are a type of theft involving a motor vehicle but are different in substance and penalties.

Grand theft auto involves the taking of a motor vehicle, without threats, violence, or force, such as taking the car from a parking lot or the victim’s driveway. It is usually a third-degree felony, with fines of up to $5,000 and up to five years in prison. However, the charges could be a first- or second-degree felony depending on the value of the theft.

While grand theft auto is still a serious crime, the absence of violence makes it a lesser crime than carjacking.  

Why Choose Us

Since 2011, Farkas & Crowley have provided their clients with strong, aggressive criminal defense against a wide variety of criminal charges. With prior experience as prosecutors, Adam Farkas and Jacqueline Crowley have chosen criminal defense as their calling to ensure that the accused have the strongest defense and their rights protected.

Carjacking is a serious violent crime which if convicted can lead to some of Florida’s harshest penalties. If you or a loved one has been accused of carjacking, contact Farkas & Crowley today by calling (561)444-9529. We’re available 24/7. For inquiries or questions, please use our online contact form

carjacking arrest

Looking for a criminal law firm? Farkas & Crowley, P.A. are the attorneys for you. They are extremely knowledgeable of the law and go the extra mile for their clients. Their expertise and impeccable work ethic are hard to beat. Available 24/7. Highly recommended.

-Marla Newman

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500 S. Australian Ave.
6th Floor
West Palm Beach, FL 33401


(561) - 444 - 9529


Mon - Fri: 9 am – 5 pm

Farkas & Crowley, PA

Criminal Defense & Family Law Lawyers