Jacksonville Criminal LawyersWhen detectives show up at your home to conduct a search or pull you over and request that you perform standardized field sobriety tests (SFSTs), you need to know your legal rights. Even if you have not been arrested, legal advice from seasoned Jacksonville criminal defense lawyers can help you defend your rights and future. The decision to retain an attorney when an investigation is pending before formal charges have been filed can result in a far better disposition.
The Importance of Speaking With A Jacksonville Criminal Defense LawyerIf you have representation at the pre-charge stage of a criminal case, your attorneys can expose weaknesses in the prosecutor’s case, questions about the admissibility of evidence, and a paucity of evidence to prove specific charges. Effective negotiation based on these strategies can lead to a decision not to file charges, an agreement to diversion, or fewer and/or less serious charges. Since the initial charges usually set the parameters for a plea agreement in the case, success in influencing the initial charging decision usually will mean the parameters for a plea agreement will be set at a lower level.
Jacksonville Criminal Defense AttorneysCriminal charges can threaten your job, family stability, liberty, reputation, and financial well-being, but our Jacksonville criminal defense attorneys provide aggressive opposition to the full range of criminal offenses, such as:
- Drug Crimes
- Narcotics Crimes
- Juvenile Crimes
- Violent Crimes
- White-Collar Crimes
- Sexual Crimes
- DUI-Related Offenses
- Federal Crimes
- Child Pornography
- Child Molestation
- Criminal Enterprise Crimes
Sex Crime Lawyers in JacksonvilleWhile most people probably would be hesitant to condemn a high school senior who engages in consensual sex with his sophomore girlfriend to a lifetime of adverse consequences, Florida’s tough sex crime penalties can have exactly this result. While any misdemeanor or felony offense can result in undesirable forms of punishment, most sex offenses require registration as a sex predator or sex offender. Although pursuing employment, housing, and close personal relationships can always be complicated by a criminal conviction, a registrant will face more than the risk of incarceration, fines, counseling, and probation.
Jacksonville Sex Crime Defense StrategyTo determine the best possible sex crime defense strategy, our attorneys conduct a thorough evaluation of all factors involved in the case. Depending on the facts of your case, defenses that might be relevant include:
- Lack of knowledge or specific intent
- Consensual encounter
- Suppression of illegally obtained statements or confessions
- Attacking the credibility of the government’s witnesses
- Tainted testimony of a child skewed by a biased or suggestive interview
Jacksonville Sex Offender RegistrationWhen you are convicted of many sex crimes in Florida, you must register as either a sexual predator or sexual offender. The sexual predator designation is reserved for those who engage in violent sexual offenses. Florida law does not provide a process for those designated as sexual predators to be removed from the registry. When the alleged victim of a sex crime is under the age of 16, the registered sex offender usually will not be able to live within a thousand feet of a school, park or playground facility under state law. Many county and city ordinances impose even stricter restrictions that can make it virtually impossible for a registrant to find housing.
Jacksonville DUI LawyersMany people think their chances of beating a DUI charge are virtually non-existent because of the “science” of screening procedures like chemical tests of blood alcohol concentration (BAC). However, our experienced Jacksonville DUI lawyers have represented hundreds of people facing DUI charges, so we have the expertise and background to challenge the prosecutor’s case based on Constitutional, administrative, and/or legal grounds. An effective challenge to the basis for the stop of your vehicle, for example, could result in all the evidence against you being thrown out by the judge. Driving under the influence (DUI) is defined in Florida Statutes, Section 316.193 as driving a vehicle or exercising actual physical control over a vehicle when your “normal faculties” are diminished by drugs or alcohol or you have a BAC of .08% or higher. Conviction under this provision can result in imprisonment, fines, and other penalties. If you have prior convictions or were transporting a minor in the vehicle, you could face harsher penalties even for a first offense.
Strategies Used by Jacksonville DUI AttorneysSome common defense strategies in DUI cases include: Illegal Stop: Police officers cannot pull you over based on a mere “hunch,” they must have “reasonable suspicion” that you are committing a traffic offense or “probable cause” you are committing a crime. This “reasonable suspicion” must be based on articulable facts rather than mere speculation or guesswork. Contesting Field Sobriety Test Results: These “divided attention” tasks must be conducted according to very specific procedures and evaluation guidelines. Many officers lack the required training to administer the tests properly. Even if properly trained, the officer might deviate from these protocols. In other cases, physical disability, illness, or injury might impair a motorist’s ability to perform these tests properly. Challenge Chemical Tests: Breath tests are only admissible if the test complies with strict regulations and mandatory maintenance procedures are followed. The results can be thrown out for noncompliance with these procedural and maintenance requirements. Exclusion of Damaging Statements: When the officer pulls you over, he or she will likely ask questions like the following:
- Have you been drinking?
- How much have you had to drink?
- Where are you coming from?
Request A Jacksonville DUI AttorneyFlorida law does not require motorists to answer these questions, so you should politely indicate you want legal advice before answering any questions. The officer will not allow you to call your lawyer, but this provides a convenient rationale for your refusal. If you did answer questions, those statements may still be subject to suppression if the officer violated your Miranda rights or compelled an “involuntary” confession.
Domestic Violence Lawyers in JacksonvilleDomestic violence refers to a category of crimes under Florida law that generally involve threats or acts of violence between parties in certain designated relationships under Florida Statutes Section 741.28. The relevant relationships include:
- Married or formally married partners
- Parties related by either marriage or blood
- Parties who live or have lived together as a family
- Parents of a child
Jacksonville Domestic Violence Defense StrategyOur domestic violence lawyers in Jacksonville conduct a thorough evaluation of medical records, law enforcement records, witness statements, and other evidence to determine the best defense strategy, such as fabricated allegations or self-defense. The statutory provision provides a non-exclusive list of offenses that merit a domestic violence charge:
- Aggravated Assault
- Aggravated Battery
- False Imprisonment
- Aggravated Stalking
- Other crimes resulting in injury between parties in the relationships indicated above
- Murder and manslaughter
- Assault and battery
- Sex crimes
- Gun charges
Florida Criminal Defense Firm DEDICATED TO DEFENDING YOUR RIGHTS
Get Experienced Counsel—Call (904) 610-6545
Navigating a criminal charge requires extensive knowledge of Florida laws. Even though the law states “innocent until proven guilty,” you should always remember that as a defendant, you will need to be ready to prove to the court that the charges and evidence levied against are false. Our team has 150 years combined experience, we know how a defendant needs to present themselves in court. We can give you advice and help you be confident walking into court.A conviction can carry with it heavy, life-altering consequences. Don’t risk your future. Reach out to a Jacksonville defense lawyer as soon as possible to protect your name and reputation.
Our lines are open 24/7. Call Musca Law today at (904) 610-6545.
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Jacksonville, FL 32204