Floyd Mayweather was recently sentenced to 90 days in jail after pleading guilty to domestic battery and harassment, calling into question whether he will be able to fight Manny Pacquiao in a bout that was slated for May. This is not a first offense for Mayweather, who has a prior record of domestic battery in multiple states. Mayweather was initially charged with felony battery but plead guilty to reduced charges as a condition of his plea.
In Florida, domestic battery is the kind of crime that the more times you are convicted of it, the harsher the penalty. The first time, it is a first degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in a jail. But the vast majority of first time offenders who qualify in Palm Beach County can obtain what is called a “plea and pass.” This allows the person to plead guilty, attend anger management classes that are geared specifically toward domestic violence situations, and then if the person successfully completes the program and doesn’t get arrested for anything else, the guilty plea is withdrawn and the charges are dismissed. This keeps a person from having a criminal record and he may even be eligible to have his record sealed or expunged if he has no prior convictions and hasn’t had his record sealed or expunged before in the past.
If a person is convicted of domestic battery and then is arrested for the same charge again, he could be facing a felony charge for battery, even for the same conduct, all because he has a history of it. This means for the same type of battery (a hit, push, slap, or punch), he could be facing up to five years in prison. This is similar to what Mayweather experienced in being charged with a felony battery. Although he was sentenced to 90 days in jail, he could have technically been facing prison time and a felony conviction if convicted after trial.