Articles Posted in Self-Defense

St. Augustine Criminal Defense LawyerThe Trayvon Martin Case takes another unexpected turn. This time, the attorneys for George Zimmerman (Hal Uhrig and Craig Sonner) have dropped him as a client following three days of no communication between the two parties. They also state Zimmerman is under a lot of stress and they have lost control of his actions.

At the announcement of their withdrawal, the attorneys stated Zimmerman had contacted the Special Prosecutor’s Office directly, had an off-the-record conservation with FoxNews, and created a personal website for legal representation. All these actions were done without the consent and guidance of his attorneys. As a St. Augustine Criminal Defense Lawyer, these actions by Zimmerman are shocking. They go against all procedural aspects as a criminal defendant. I advise my clients not to talk to the police, State Attorneys, or any body regarding their case unless I am present and can control the situation.

These actions taken by Zimmerman may display his unease with the situation or the effect of isolation on both his mental and physical condition. However, taking on his case without legal representation would be a big mistake. This case has caught the eye of the Nation and is highly criticized on both sides. He need Attorney’s fighting for his rights and making sure the proper steps are being taken to protect him.

Mandarin Criminal Defense LawyerRecently Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law has come into controversy. Many cases in Jacksonville and around Florida have been questioning this Florida Law. As a Mandarin Criminal Defense Lawyer, this Law gives Criminal Defendant’s immunity from their actions if they constitute self-defense. Furthermore, one is permitted to use deadly force to combat a violent attack if serious bodily injury or death will likely result.

There is another recent example of “Stand Your Ground” in Lake County Florida. In this incident, the homeowner shot and killed his 27 year old house guest during an altercation Saturday night. According to reports, 21 year old Jakob Penrod got into an altercation with his houseguest, his finance’s brother. During the fight, Jakob shot and killed the houseguest in alleged self-defense. Florida Police have supported this notion by the evidence collected at the scene.

Although, it appears to be self-defense, the case has been submitted to the State Attorney for review and determination as to whether or not to file charges. If charges are to be filed, it does not automatically mean a conviction will follow. The quicker you get a Mandarin Criminal Defense Lawyer involved, the longer and more time they have to influence the State in not filing charges or mitigating the already pending charges. Therefore, if you are facing a Mandarin Criminal Offense, contact a Mandarin Criminal Defense Lawyer today. It could prove to be invaluable in your case.

Ponte Vedra Beach Criminal Defense LawyerThe complexity of the Trayvon Martin shooting continues. This time an empty Sanford Police car parked outside the apartment complex where Trayvon Martin was shot was found Tuesday morning riddled with bullets. According to local Police, no one was inside the vehicle at the time of the shooting, however, at least one window was shattered as a result. Witnesses testify they heard at least 6 shots fired. No arrests have been made and an investigation is ongoing.

This case made National headlines after Zimmerman’s action came into question. He claims self-defense under Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, but others are not so sure. People have protested all over the state, the President has made a speech about Trayvon, and the Governor has appointed Jacksonville’s State Attorney -Angela Corey- as special prosecutor in this case. As a Ponte Vedra Beach Criminal Defense Lawyer, I keep informed about this case because of the potential impact it will have on my clients in the future. This case will define Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law and could limit the scope in the future.

As this case progresses more and more facts will be revealed and the true understanding of the incident will come to light. If you should find yourself facing potential Ponte Vedra Beach Criminal Offense and believe you acted in self-defense, contact a Ponte Vedra Beach Criminal Defense Lawyer today. I can review your case, make the proper determinations, and provide you with the best defense possible.

Ponte Vedra Criminal Defense LawyerJacksonville’s State Attorney, Angela Corey, has made the determination not to ask a grand jury to decide on potential charges against George Zimmerman. Corey, Special Prosecutor, appointed by Governor Rick Scott canceled the already scheduled Grand Jury. The previous prosecutor empaneled this Grand Jury, but Corey has decided to take a different approach. Corey has stated this does not affect her decision on whether or not charges are forthcoming.

This investigation stems from the February 26 shooting of Travyon Martin. According to Zimmerman, the neighborhood watchman, Martin was shot in self-defense after attacking Zimmerman. Since the shooting, this highly publicized case has made national headlines, presidential speeches, the rise of a new Black Panther Party, and numerous allegations as to guilt of Zimmerman.

As a Ponte Vedra Criminal Defense Attorney and Attorneys everywhere this case has caught my attention and the impact it may have on future cases. Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law has been placed into question and the outcome of this case has the potential to limit its impact. Under the law a person does not have a duty to retreat when faced with violence. Furthermore, the victim can use deadly force if necessary to prevent imminent death or serious bodily injury.

BulletsA recent shooting outside Arby’s located on Baymeadows Rd. in Jacksonville, Florida leaves Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office (JSO) on the manhunt for the suspect. This shooting struck my attention as a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer because I frequent that area and have eaten at that establishment in the past. With the little information provided to the press about the shooting, I am left with concern as to the motive and possible defenses the suspect may have regarding this shooting.

According to reports, JSO responded to a 911 call on Wednesday around 3 PM. When JSO arrived they located the gunshot victim in the parking lot and took him to Orange Park Medical Center for treatment. His injuries are listed as serious, but not life-threatening. JSO investigated the shooting and questions witnesses that were at the restaurant at that time. However, they were not able to get a description or located the suspect at this time. The investigation is ongoing.

As a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer, this incident, without further details, brings many questions to mind. Was there an altercation between the suspect and victim? Was the suspect acting in self-defense? How does the victim portray the events leading up to the shooting? Could the victim actually identify the shooter? All these questions and more will have to be answered before the State can make an arrest or file charges. In addition, eyewitness testimony is notoriously inaccurate and largely incorrect.

Orange Park Criminal Defense LawyerLike everyone else across the country, I have been following the coverage of the Trayvon Martin case and investigation. Even more so after Jacksonville’s own State Attorney, Angela Corey, was assigned to the case. Although heartbreaking, the investigation has also brought national attention to so-called “Stand Your Ground” laws.

Under Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law, an Orange Park resident is justified in using deadly force against another person if he or she reasonably believes the force is necessary to prevent “imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another person. . . .” The problem with the law is that once a shooter invokes self-defense under the Stand Your Ground Law, the police must find evidence to disprove the shooter’s story before they can arrest him.

Analyzing the Trayvon case, if the police can establish that the voice shouting for help in the infamous 911 call belongs to Trayvon Martin, it could potentially suffice as enough evidence to arrest Trayvon’s shooter, George Zimmerman. If they find the voice belongs to Zimmerman, then police likely will not arrest Zimmerman. However, an adequate prediction cannot be made without more facts and because neither the Sanford police nor Duval County Prosecutor Angela Corey is releasing information, further analysis would be speculative.

Gun2Florida’s Stand Your Ground law has recently come into question in an appeal by a Jacksonville teen. As a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer I make it an objective to keep updated and informed as to changing and potentially influential cases and Jacksonville Criminal Laws. Just for clarification, Mr. Seay has not been convicted of any offense and is seeking this appeal by Writ of Prohibition. As all Jacksonville Criminal Defendants they are innocent until proven guilty. His Defense Attorney is working diligently to protect his client’s rights and to ensure that his client is treated fairly in the Jacksonville Legal System.

In that case, three men attacked Seay and his Friend. During the altercation Seay was beaten and forced back until a large tree obstructed his path of retreat, leaving no clear means of escape. That is when Seay pulled a gun and shot into the air. His intention was to scare the men and protect himself from death or serious bodily injury. However, from the angle Seay was located one of the men was shot and killed.

Unfortunately, Seay was not given immunity from his actions under Florida’s Stand your Ground Defense. Under that law, a person who is not involved in the commission of an unlawful activity and has a legal right to be at the place of the incident, they have a right to meet force with force and to not back down from a fight. Furthermore, the law allows a person to use deadly force if that person reasonable fears and/or believes it is necessary to use deadly force to prevent imminent death.

Castle.jpgrThe city of Jacksonville and all of Duval, for that matter, have a large population contained within a relatively small area. This population density, amongst other factors, plays into the amount of crime that occurs across Jacksonville and Duval together. Through my previous posts on Defendant rights and defenses, I am confronted with the question, “Do I have a duty to retreat before using defensive force against my attacker?” As a Criminal Defense Lawyer, I see this situation arise frequently, one suspect will attack another and that person will shoot or kill the original attacker. But, what are the legal consequences of these actions?

First and foremost, I am not condoning the use of defensive force and any situation and should only be utilized in a situation where defensive force is unavoidable. With that being said, Under Florida Law, known as the Castle Doctrine, one does not have a duty to retreat to prevent injury or death or prevent a forcible felony. This form of Self-Defense is articulated under Florida Statute § 776.013, which reads:

A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

Defense.jpgIn the Jacksonville news and else where there have been several shootings occurring around our state of Florida. These shootings have taken my mind to the question of “when is the justifiable use of deadly force permitted in Jacksonville?” So, as a Criminal Lawyer, I have decided to notate some of the finer points of the use of deadly force. As a precursor, the use of deadly force should only be used when the situation requires, it the situation can be resolved peacefully; explore that option first.

With that being said, Florida Statute § 776.013 articulates the “justifiable use of force.” The statute reads, “a person is presumed to have held a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another when using defensive force that is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm to another if:”

  1. The suspect was unlawfully and forcibly entering your home, business, or occupied vehicle OR the suspect was attempting to kidnap a person in said areas AND the one using force knew or had reason to know that said entry or kidnapping was occurring or had occurred.
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