Articles Posted in Domestic Violence

Record-SealAs a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer I receive numerous calls regarding a person’s past Florida Criminal History and their desire to have it sealed or expunged. However, I am not always able to assist due to the statutory confines of the Florida Statutes. Therefore, in order to clarify some immediate questions, the offenses listed below cannot be Sealed or Expunged.

Florida Statutes § 943.0585 and § 943.059 list several criteria that must be satisfied before allowing a Florida Criminal record to be Sealed or Expunged. One of these criteria is that the crime does not fall into a number of certain crime categories. These include:

  1. Aggravated Assault

GavelRecently a Duval County Teacher was arrested on charges of Child Abuse. The alleged incident took place on April 2, 2012. According to the report, Kristopher Hunter, the teacher, kicked the student in the back and also slammed the boy against the wall. The boy had to seek medical treatment for the injuries he sustained during the incident. The student’s name has not been released due to his age. However, it was revealed that the incident occurred between a teacher and a student of Arlington Middle School.

The act of child abuse is defined under Florida Statute § 827.03. Under that Statute child abuse is defined as “intentional infliction of physical or mental injury upon a child; an intentional act that could reasonably be expected to result in physical or mental injury to a child.” As a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer I have received numerous calls regarding child abuse. What some may not know is child abuse is considered a 3rd degree felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or $5,000 in fines.

Applying the law to the facts above, it could be established Mr. Hunter was guilty of Child abuse. Mr. Hunter committed an intentional act, kicking and slamming the child, which could reasonably be expected to result in injury, the child was taken to the hospital for medical treatment. Therefore, if the State can prove their case “beyond a reasonable doubt” he could be convicted.

Atlantic Beach Domestic Violence AttorneyAtlantic Beach Domestic Violence Accusations are very serious charges. What do you do when you have been accused of Domestic Violence? How do you defend yourself when someone has accused you of domestic violence in Atlantic Beach, Florida?

If someone accuses you of domestic violence, you need to watch what you say. In many cases, when the Jacksonville Beach Sheriff’s Office responds to a domestic dispute, someone ends up going to jail. You do not want your words to be misconstrued and used against you.

  • If you have been arrested for Atlantic Beach Domestic Violence, you will go before a judge for first appearance court. Here, you will (a) receive a bond or (b) accept a plea deal. The majority of the time, accepting a plea deal is one of the worse things that you can do. Usually, the Atlantic Beach Domestic Battery Sentence will include extensive probation and you will not be able to get the charge sealed. It is best to discuss the case with an Atlantic Beach Domestic Violence Attorney before doing anything.

Riverside Criminal Defense LawyerDo you have a Riverside Criminal History that is keeping you from getting that apartment you want, prevented from getting that ideal job, or refused a loan because of your past? If so, I can help. However, in most cases, you must act now and not wait until the case has been resolved.

As a Riverside Criminal Defense Lawyer, I am often confronted with the question, “Why should I hire a Riverside Criminal Defense Lawyer?” The answer is simple; to protect your rights and to protect your FUTURE. As a Riverside Attorney, I can work for you to get the best outcome possible given your current situation. Most importantly I can take three avenues to make assist you in having a better future.

First, I can work with the State Attorney or Prosecutor to attempt to influence their filing decision and get the charges dropped. Just because you have been arrested for a Riverside Criminal Offense, does not automatically mean there will be a conviction. However, the filing decision is made early in the legal process, so time is of the essence in this approach.

Police-ReportAs a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer I hear about a multitude of Criminal issues and I am not surprised all that often. However, I have recently been overwhelmed with the amount of inquiries concerning the filing of False Jacksonville Police Reports. This action, when taken, can lead to serious penalties for the wrongly accused and the person filing the report. Most people I speak to do not realize the severity of their actions and were just angry, jealous, or upset when making the report. But, their actions have now led to an arrest and possible conviction of an innocent Criminal Defendant.

Florida Statute § 817.49 defines the crime of filing a false police report. It reads, “whoever willfully imparts, conveys or causes to be imparted or conveyed to any law enforcement officer false information or reports concerning the alleged commission of any crime under the laws of this state, knowing such information or report to be false, in that no such crime had actually been committed, shall upon conviction thereof be guilty.” Filing a False Jacksonville Police Report is a first-degree misdemeanor and is punishable by up to one year in jail and/or fines not exceeding $1,000.

As a Duval, St. Johns, Clay, and Nassau County Criminal Defense Lawyer people who file false police reports only make my representation of Criminal Defendants more complicated. Therefore, next time you are angry, upset, or jealous of another, think twice before deciding to file a false police report. It could end negatively for all parties involved. So, if you are facing a Jacksonville, Duval, St. Johns, Clay, or Nassau County Criminal Charge and believe the accusations are false, contact a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer today. That decision could prove to be invaluable in your case.

JailJacksonville Arrests occur all the time and when you caught of guard and arrested by the Jacksonville Police, you may not know what to do or say. That is why the advice and counsel of a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer could prove to be invaluable. In Jacksonville, first appearance court (also known as bond hearing), most Jacksonville Criminal Defendants will not be represented by a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer. Under Florida law, a Jacksonville Criminal Defendant is entitled to appear before a judge within 24 hours of his arrest. Due to this Florida law, Duval County first appearance court is held twice a day, every day.

As a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer, I have seen many Jacksonville Criminal Defendants stand before a judge without representation. Although there is a Jacksonville Public Defender present in the room, this is only one Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer to represent all the Jacksonville Criminal Defendants for day. It is not possible for a Jacksonville Criminal Attorney to zealously and adequately represent that many Jacksonville Criminal Defendants at one time.

That is why Jacksonville Criminal Defendants who hire a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer to represent them at their bond hearing have the benefit of one lawyer for just one client. Also, an experienced Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer will give the judge favorable and valuable information about the Jacksonville Criminal Defendant to the judge at the bond hearing. This evidence will allow the judge to consider these mitigating factors in hopes of lowering the bond or releasing the Jacksonville Criminal Defendant on ROR.

Crime-Scene1As a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer most of my clients call me after they have been arrested in Jacksonville, Clay County, Nassau County, or the surrounding area. An arrest in Jacksonville, Clay, St. Augustine, or Nassau County can happen in one of two ways. The first way is the traditional arrest, that we all know of or have seen, that involves being placed in handcuffs and take to the local Florida Police Station. However, as an alternative, the officer can just issue a Notice to Appear and let you go on your way. A Notice to Appear is a piece of paper that acts as an arrest, but you are not actually taken into custody by the Jacksonville, Clay, or Nassau Police. You will have to make a court date to address the criminal charge in Jacksonville. A notice to appear is normally issued to people who have never been in trouble before and is up to the police discretion.

If you have been arrested in Jacksonville, Clay, or Nassau County you will be taken to a pretrial detention center. Once at the pretrial detention center, you will be searched, fingerprinted and seen by a jail nurse. Once your medical evaluation is over, you will be told to change into the jail clothes and put on one of six floors at the jail.

While in detention, before your first appearance before the judge, the police may try to interrogate you and try to gain valuable information in proving their case. However, you have the right to remain silent and as a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer I strongly advise you to exercise that right. As a Jacksonville, Clay, or Nassau Criminal Defendant, you must remember that the police are not there to help you, they are there to justify their arrest. When approached by the police at the pretrial detention center, ask to speak to a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer and don’t say anything else to the police. It could prove to be the difference between a conviction and having the charges dropped.

Miranda.jpgCrime can happen anywhere in Jacksonville and can happen to anyone, but just because you have been arrested for an alleged Jacksonville Criminal Offense does not mean you don’t have rights. The right I want to bring to the attention of Jacksonville Residents today is one’s rights under Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966). These rights are more commonly referred to as your “Miranda Warnings.”

Under your Miranda Warnings, upon arrest and taken into custody, the police must notify the criminal defendant of the following rights:

  1. The right to remain silent

Crime-SceneLast week a South Florida 24-year old was arrested following a Domestic Violence altercation when he allegedly threw feces at his girlfriend. The boyfriend is also charged with beating his girlfriend with a bed board and his fists. At the scene the girlfriend refused medical attention although she had an abrasion on her chest. The boyfriend also suffered an abrasion to his left arm. Currently he is being held on a $26,000 bond for battery, aggravated battery, and criminal mischief.

In previous blogs I have written about battery (F.S.A. § 784.03) and aggravated battery (F.S.A § 784.045). Simple battery is a first-degree misdemeanor, whereas, aggravated battery is a third-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison. These are serious charges pending against this young man.

This case is just in the initial stages and there is still a lot that has to be determined before he can be convicted of the charges against him. For instance, the police only arrested the man, but he also suffered injuries. Could those be self-defense injuries? Did the woman actually start the altercation and he was just protecting himself? These and more will be fleshed out as the case progresses.

Bail-BondAs a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer many Criminal Defendants are out on bail. Bail comes in many forms and is determined by the judge during the initial appearances of the defendant. Furthermore, a bail can be set in a monetary amount, ROR, or surety. But, what happens if bail is paid and subsequently the Jacksonville Criminal Defendant does not appear at the required court hearing?

Florida Statutes Chapter 903 specifically deals with all matters relating to Bail. The Statute of particular importance in this blog is § 903.26 “Forfeiture of the bond…” According to the Statute, a bond can be forfeited for a breach of the conditions set forth in the bond and/or failure of the Defendant to appear at a required Court hearing. Failure of a Defendant to appear at a required Court hearing can have serious adverse consequences in your pending Jacksonville Criminal case. Additionally, up failure to appear the Court will issue a capias or a bench warrant for your arrest. A warrant will only compound the Criminal issues that are presently before you.

What about the person who paid the bond for your release? They will not have criminal or civil charges brought against them, unless they aided or assisted in your bail jumping. However, they will have lost the amount of money given to the Courts guaranteeing your return. This can be a substantial loss for some. It could mean the loss of your home, car, or a large sum of money. My advise for those who decide to post bail for another, make sure the Jacksonville Criminal Defendant is going to return to court before deciding to post their bail. It will not benefit either party if the Defendant does not return to Court.

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