In Jacksonville, Florida, the crime of kidnapping is a first-degree felony and punishable by up to life in prison. Florida Statute Section 787.01(1)(a) defines Florida kidnapping and states:
“(1)(a) The term “kidnapping” means forcibly, secretly, or by threat confining, abducting, or imprisoning another person against her or his will and without lawful authority, with intent to:
1. Hold for ransom or reward or as a shield or hostage.
2. Commit or facilitate commission of any felony.
3. Inflict bodily harm upon or to terrorize the victim or another person.
4. Interfere with the performance of any governmental or political function.”
While this Jacksonville Kidnapping Law seems self-explanatory, issues have arisen in the Florida appellate courts in reference to Section 787.01(1)(a)(2). Therefore, “the inquiry into whether a kidnapping has occurred under this provision does not end” with the statute, because the Florida Supreme Court “has recognized that the statute’s literal interpretation would result in a kidnapping conviction for ‘any criminal transaction which inherently involves the unlawful confinement of another person, such as robbery or sexual battery.'” Delgado v. State, 36 Fla. L. Weekly S220c (2011) (citing Berry v. State, 668 So. 2d 967, 969 (Fla. 1996) (quoting Mobley v. State, 409 So. 2d 1031, 1034 (Fla. 1982)); see also Lynch v. State, 2 So. 3d 47, 62 (Fla. 2008) (recognizing that “the plain text of section 787.01, Florida Statutes, could lead to potentially absurd results”).