Articles Tagged with Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer

Fort Lauderdale is a prime destination for tourists from across the country and around the world. It’s estimated more than 120 million people flock to Florida each year – many making their way to the Southeast coast. Unfortunately, if you’re arrested on vacation in Fort Lauderdale (most often for DUI, domestic violence, drunk and disorderly, solicitation, and drug possession), your good time can quickly morph into a legal nightmare. Our Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyers can help.Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer

How you proceed will depend to some extent on the severity of the crime and the specifics of the case. Chances are, if you’re arrested for a misdemeanor, you will not be held for any extended period of time in jail, but you may be expected to return. It is possible that a lawyer can resolve your case for you without you having to return, but again, it will depend on the exact circumstances. It’s also possible that the consequences of any conviction will follow you in your own district, particularly if there are any supervised release requirements.

If you’re arrested for a felony (which are more serious charges), you may expect your time in jail to be a bit longer, and your legal fees, court costs, and penalties to be more substantial.

It is important to keep in mind that simply going home will not make the charge go away. It is critical to consult with an experienced, local Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer who will offer sound legal advise, ensure your rights are protected, and fight for the best possible outcome.

Some factors to consider following a Fort Lauderdale arrest on vacation: Continue reading

Non-fatal strangulation involving intimate partners is seen as a bright red flag foreshadowing the risk of domestic violence homicide. In one analysis published in the Journal of Emergency Medicine, 60 percent of those who experience domestic violence are strangled during the course of that relationship. If the person loses consciousness, they risk death within one-to-two days due to strokes, aspiration, and blood clots. A person who is strangled once is 800 percent more likely to become a victim of homicide by their partner. domestic violence attorney Fort Lauderdale

For these reasons, as our Fort Lauderdale domestic violence defense lawyers can explain, Florida prosecutors and the courts are going to take an allegation of domestic violence strangulation very seriously. If convicted, you will be facing substantial penalties, including the possibility of years behind bars.

If you are accused of domestic violence strangulation in Florida, it is imperative that you immediately get in touch with a criminal defense attorney. A lawyer will work to inform you of your rights and obligations, protect you from unwittingly harming your case, and swiftly identify any violation of rights that may impact the strength of the state’s evidence against you.

What is Domestic Violence Strangulation?

Under Florida law, domestic battery by strangulation, as defined in F.S. 784.01, is a felony offense. It’s a charge that can apply when a person commits domestic battery while knowingly, intentionally, and against the will of the other person impedes the normal breathing or circulation of blood of a person, so as to create great bodily harm while applying pressure on the throat or neck or by blocking the nose or mouth. The victim in these cases is a family or household member, a romantic partner (current or previous) or someone with whom you share a child.

This offense is considered a third-degree felony. Although that is technically the lowest level of felony, it still carries potential penalties of up to five years in prison PLUS five years of probation PLUS $5,000 in fines – not to mention restrictions on firearms possession and mandatory batterers’ intervention courses (which you must pay for). If there are aggravating circumstances, such as use of a deadly weapon or a victim who is a minor, the charge could be bumped to a second-degree felony, which carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. This is also true if the alleged victim suffers serious or lasting injury or death. Those with prior criminal records will likely face more significant penalties as well.

It’s important for anyone facing a Florida charge for domestic violence strangulation to understand that prosecutors are aggressive when it comes to this charge. They will be pressing the courts for extended periods of prison time and probation oversight. Even if this is the only time you’ve ever been in trouble with the law, you can expect that they are going to try to throw the book at you. And because this is a domestic violence case, it doesn’t matter if the alleged victim wants to “drop the charges.” They don’t have the authority to do so. Only the prosecutor does. This is another reason you need to have an attorney with specific experience in domestic violence cases representing you.

Failure to Seek South Florida Domestic Violence Attorney Help Can Hamper Your Case

This is a charge that will substantially impact you for the rest of your life if you’re convicted. Continue reading

With the proliferation of marijuana legalization across the country in recent years, one might be forgiven for thinking Florida marijuana possession is entirely legal. But in fact, as our Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyers can explain, that is not exactly true.criminal defense lawyer

In fact, even as some municipal and county governments have decriminalized marijuana possession (to a certain extent), it still has the potential to rise to the level of a felony. Much depends on where you are, the amount of cannabis involved, and whether there is evidence it was intended for more than mere personal use.

If you are arrested for any marijuana-related charges, it is wise to recognize the severity of possible consequences and hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Although it depends on the circumstances, a skilled attorney can often successfully argue to have such charges reduced or dropped entirely. Unfortunately, many people arrested for marijuana – or any drug-related offenses – tend to simply plead no contest, perhaps not realizing that the mark will remain on their permanent record, potentially impacting future employment, education, and housing opportunities.

Will I Always Be Arrested for Marijuana Possession in Florida? 

No. Unlike just a few years ago, simple possession of marijuana doesn’t always end in arrest. Even when it does, chances are it will be a misdemeanor-level offense.

But people make the mistake of presuming misdemeanor means no real impact on their life. But a first-degree misdemeanor can carry up to 1 year of jail time and a fine of up to $1,000. Continue reading

December is best known for all its holidays, but it’s also associated with a spike in certain types of crime. According to the National Crime Victimization Survey, crimes that see an uptick during “the most wonderful time of the year”:Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney

  • Robbery
  • Personal larceny
  • Domestic violence
  • DUI

The seasonality of crime trends has been studied for decades, with some studies finding clear patterns and others finding the link more ambiguous. Theft crimes in particular shoot up right around the holidays, climbing in some regions by a full 20 percent. Violent crimes, such as murder and sexual assault, tend not to follow this same pattern. Incidents of domestic violence, however, do slightly increase, probably because folks are spending more time at home.

As our Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyers can explain, several of these crimes could be charged as felonies, depending on the individual facts of the case and the degree to which alleged victims are affected. Even misdemeanor crimes, though, can have a substantial impact on your future, potentially limiting your housing and employment options. Further, because criminal convictions and other history are public, such charges may impact your personal life, including personal relationships, child custody, and immigration status. Investing in the help of an experienced criminal defense lawyer to help minimize the affect is not just about the short-term concerns of impending jail time, but what that conviction could mean for you years down the road.

Here, we take a closer look at the crimes most common in December, and possible defense tactics that can minimize the impact of such charges on your life. Continue reading

If you’re visiting South Florida this spring break, the last souvenir you want to bring back is a DUI charge. If this is the situation in which you find yourself, our longtime Fort Lauderdale DUI defense lawyers can help. Fort Lauderdale DUI defense lawyer

Last spring was fairly abysmal for an annual spring break season in Florida, but this year is looking up. Some hotels are reporting 75-80 percent capacity, as many folks venture out for the first time in more than a year. Florida is especially popular right now because it hasn’t been as rigorous in its enforcement of health and safety measures as other states, and people from all over the country are looking for a more relaxed change of scenery.

South Beach, Fort Lauderdale and the Florida Keys remain a top spring break destination in the U.S. If you are arrested for DUI here, you could be facing substantial penalties, so it’s important to work with a local criminal defense attorney  well-versed in state law and local processes and who has successfully represented numerous people arrested while visiting from out-of-town. Continue reading

A new Florida bill aims to erase minor misdemeanor marijuana convictions, including distribution and possession of less than 20 grams. The bill wouldn’t automatically expunge criminal records, but would make it easier for those with convictions to have them removed, according to the Orlando Sentinel. Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer
Sponsors noted the many ill effects of “minor” crime convictions, including blocked job opportunities, rejection from certain schools, loss of public benefits and housing. All this of course is on top of the expenses of arrest, incarceration, fines, etc.
Some convicted of non-violent felony drug crimes fare even worse. The Miami New Times reported on the case of a 45-year-old from Brevard who was a 22-year-old college student in 1997 when he was arrested on felony drug charges for having a two-inch plant growing out of a coffee cup in his home. Officers spotted it while responding to an unrelated matter with his roommate. All these years later, it still prevents him from finding housing and employment – despite the fact that the drug is legal as medicine in Florida and for recreation use in 15 states and Washington, D.C.

Recently, a Florida woman was arrested for DUI manslaughter and child neglect after she allegedly crashed her SUV with four children and another adult in the car. One child, her 3-year-old daughter, died.Fort Lauderdale DUI defense lawyer

Although this is a profound loss this mother will grieve the rest of her life, the law does not allow for this alone to be “punishment enough.” Per F.S. 316.193, DUI manslaughter is a second-degree felony charge that carries a maximum prison sentence of 15 years.

Most DUI arrests, even those that involve crashes, do not involve deaths. However, courts in Florida take very seriously DUI cases involving minor passengers under 18, even if no one was hurt. Continue reading

If you’re searching for a great criminal defense lawyer, chances are you’re not in a great situation. That can make the process even more stressful. There are numerous important factors you need to consider, and it’s a good idea to make a checklist before reaching out to anyone. Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer

The very basic checklist is to find a defense lawyer who is licensed to practice in Florida, has the qualities you’re seeking and can offer the attention to your case that it requires. Doing a little research can go a long way. Continue reading

Protests over systemic police brutality against Black individuals has shined a light on the many forms of technology law enforcement has in its arsenal. One of those – surveillance technology and facial recognition – is increasingly being used by Florida police agencies to collar protesters on criminal charges.Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer

For those who may be unfamiliar, facial recognition technology uses a photo of someone to compare it to other photos in an existing database. In Pinellas County, for instance, the facial recognition system used by the sheriff’s office draws from a database of approximately 38 million photos – everything from driver’s licenses to ID cards to mugshots.

It’s a tool that has been gaining in popularity with police over the last 20 years, but it’s been highly controversial, raising concerns about privacy, mis-identification potential and the risk of racial profiling and surveillance. Continue reading

The internet has been revolutionary, allowing us to connect with others – locally and across the globe – in real time in a way that’s never before existed in human history. But it’s not been without its complications, at least where application of the law has been concerned – and that includes criminal law.criminal defense lawyer

Although many online interactions and exchanges – however heated – can be safely considered “free speech,” its bounds aren’t limitless. In fact, communications over the internet may in some cases be at higher risk of crossing the criminal threshold because they lack the benefit of context, inflection or familiarity of face-to-face or even phone conversations.

Florida criminal defense attorneys know law enforcement agencies are increasingly keen to solicit and investigate tips of threats made online, particularly in the wake of several mass shootings. Some agencies have said that dozens of potential shootings were stopped by this heightened vigilance in the wake of shootings in Dayton and El Paso.

Still, many of those charged find themselves bewildered that words, images or videos posted to a Facebook page or Instagram account might potentially have them facing jail time. Continue reading

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