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Daytona Beach Criminal Lawyers
Although encounters with police, detectives, and/or federal agents can be disturbing, the way you respond to such an encounter can go a long way towards keeping you out of jail. While the prospect of taking on the state or federal government can be daunting, the criminal justice system has armed individuals with powerful rights to use when facing overzealous prosecutors or officers who engage in a rush to judgment. While law enforcement officers might appear to want to help you, their goal is to obtain evidence that justifies pursuing a case against you and obtaining a conviction. Despite what you might be told by the detectives or agents who interview you, the best option to protect your freedom, reputation, and future is to indicate that you want to remain silent until you have a Daytona Beach criminal lawyer by your side. Experienced attorneys can protect you from unfair questions, overly suggestive lineups, deceptive or coercive interrogation tactics, and other conduct that infringes your legal rights. Our law firm handles the full spectrum of Daytona Beach criminal cases, such as the followings:
- Domestic Violence
- White-Collar Crimes
- Violent Offenses
- Drug Charges
- Sex Crimes
- Theft Crimes
- Organized Crime/RICO
- Juvenile Crimes
- Expungement/Record Clearing
Knowledgeable Domestic Violence Lawyers in Daytona Beach
Although the public has become more aware of domestic violence in recent years, the increased media exposure has prompted a significant increase in false reports. The issue of domestic abuse certainly merits attention, but some so-called “victims” have manipulated this attention to their advantage. We have had clients who were arrested after responding to a spouse, parent, significant other, co-parent, or sibling who threw the first blow or repeatedly struck our client. In other cases, we see clients targeted by complaining witnesses who use fictitious claims to gain a strategic advantage in a family court matter involving child custody/visitation or a divorce. Under Florida Statutes, Section 741.28, domestic violence includes crimes like kidnapping, threats of violence, stalking, acts of violence, false imprisonment, and other crimes that cause injury or the death of any of the following:
- Current or Former Spouse
- Blood or Marital Relation
- Persons Currently or Formerly Living Together as a Family
A domestic violence conviction means penalties that could include incarceration, 26 weekly batterers intervention sessions, fines, probation, and a criminal record. Because the conviction cannot be expunged or the record sealed, the conviction can significantly impact your career, because you might be subject to a prohibition regarding owning a firearm and carrying a concealed weapon.
A Team of Daytona Beach DUI Lawyers
Far too many people pulled over for a DUI in Daytona Beach cooperate through every step of the process by answering the officer’s questions, consenting to field sobriety and portable breath tests, and agreeing to the first plea offer from the prosecutor. This approach often reflects the misconception that DUI prosecutions are based on “hard science,” which means that a stop or arrest will lead inevitably to a DUI conviction. Contrary to this widespread belief, our experienced Daytona Beach DUI lawyers recognize that much of the evidence used in DUI cases is not reliable, and we have used an array of defenses to shield our clients from the impact of a DUI conviction. Florida Statutes, Section 316.193 enumerates two distinct forms of driving under the influence. DUI involves driving or exercising actual physical control over a vehicle if (1) the individual has a blood alcohol level of .08 percent or higher or (2) the person’s normal faculties are impaired. Violations of this provision can lead to a range of penalties depending on the circumstances and prior convictions, such as:
- Incarceration in jail or prison
- Substantial fines and costs
- Suspension of your driver’s license
- DUI school
- Impounding of your vehicle
- Required installation of ignition interlock device (IID)
The penalties become even more onerous if certain exacerbating circumstances exist like transportation of a child passenger or record of prior DUIs. Our attorneys often obtain a dismissal, substantial reductions in the charge or punishment, dismissal of the charges, or an acquittal following a trial.
All About DUI Evidence in Daytona Beach
We recognize the inherent weaknesses and unreliability of a fair amount of DUI evidence, such as: Unreliability of Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFSTs) Even when these tests are administered precisely according to the strict procedures and guidelines, studies reveal that they collectively have an error rate of between 10-20 percent. Many officers are not properly trained to administer and evaluate the tests, and officers who have appropriate training still often fail to comply with these requirements, which often makes the test highly unreliable. Reliance on Officer Observations Officers often cite their observations prior to or during an initial stop to justify a DUI investigation and arrest. However, the officer might have had an insufficient basis to stop your vehicle or made false claims regarding observation of your red eyes, the smell of alcohol on your breath, lack of coordination, and slurred speech. If these purported observations did not exist or were exaggerated, exclusion of all subsequent evidence might be justified. Faulty Chemical Tests of Blood Alcohol Level Although many people think that breath, blood, or urine tests are reliable predictors of alcohol or drug intoxication, many factors can compromise the reliability of results, such as:
- Improper collection of blood or urine samples
- Failure of the officer to properly observe a waiting period prior to a breath test
- Lack of compliance with proper procedures for mixing, storing, and transporting samples
- Use of a breathalyzer that has not been properly calibrated
Along with these types of defenses, many officers have an insufficient legal basis to stop your vehicle or to arrest you for DUI. The lack of “reasonable suspicion” for the stop or “probable cause” for an arrest could lead to exclusion of all the evidence gathered and dismissal of the charges.
Sex Crime Lawyers in Daytona Beach
While no one wants to be convicted of a crime, the mere accusation that you have committed a sexual offense can seriously affect your reputation. Our sex crime lawyers in Daytona Beach see many people who have been arrested for these serious offenses based on nothing more than the allegations of the complaining witness. Our law firm recognizes the devastating impact of a conviction of this kind of offense, so we carefully investigate the facts, identify and interview witnesses, examine and test forensic evidence, and closely review law enforcement procedures.
Our Daytona Beach Sex Crime Defense Lawyers Handle a Variety of Cases
Our approach and decades of collective experience enable us to provide an effective defense to charges that include but are not limited to the following:
- Sexual Assault/Sexual Battery
- Rape/Date Rape
- Child Exploitation/Child Abuse/Child Pornography
- Statutory Rape/Romeo & Juliet Law Violations
- Sexual Predator Act
- Lewd & Lascivious Offenses
- Internet Sex Crimes/Using the Internet to Lure a Minor
- Voyeurism/Video Voyeurism
- Sexual Tourism/Human Trafficking
- Failure to Register as a Sexual Predator or Sexual Offender
A Reliable Team of Daytona Defense Lawyers
If you discover that you are the subject of a criminal investigation or you have been arrested, our Daytona defense attorneys devote all our energies, legal acumen, and experience to provide the best possible defense.
Violent crime is any kind of criminal offense that is characterized by the use of physical force and violence. These kinds of crimes can sometimes result in severe injury or even in death. The absence of physical injury to a victim, however, does not mean that a particular crime cannot be considered violent. While in some cases it is possible for violent crimes to be tried as misdemeanors, they are essentially felony offenses. This implies that any convictions could end in a rather long prison sentence. Some violent crimes may even be charged as capital offenses, indicating that you might be facing a life in a state prison or possibly even death. Some behaviors that are considered violent crimes include but are not limited to: arson, robbery, manslaughter, rape, homicide, and assault and battery. At Musca Law, our Daytona Beach violent crimes defense attorneys will work vigorously to find more than one defense tactic when it comes to dealing with charges of violent crimes. This involves defense tactics that will range from suppression of unfavorable evidence to confronting the key witnesses against you, to the proficient negotiation of a plea bargain including a reduction in your charges. It is important that you first meet with a qualified criminal defense lawyer in Daytona Beach before you answer any questions about your case to anyone in law enforcement.
Carrying a Concealed Weapon
In the state of Florida, it is not against the law to be in possession of a firearm. There are, however, several constraints. According to Florida law, it is unlawful for a person who does not have an up-to-date Concealed Weapons Permit to hold any concealed weapon on his or her person. Anyone caught doing so can be charged with carrying a concealed weapon. Carrying a concealed weapon is legally defined as being in possession of a concealed weapon anywhere other than in your home, or any number of businesses in Florida that require a Concealed Weapons Permit. If somebody chooses to carry a weapon or firearm in a public place, however, and they do not have a current Concealed Weapons Permit, then they could be charged with a concealed weapons offense. Also according to Florida’s laws, certain residents are allowed to carry concealed weapons as long as they are accompanied by the appropriate permit. A person who is qualified for a Concealed Weapons Permit in Florida will meet the following requirements:
- Be a United States resident and a citizen or a permanent resident
- Be at least 21 years of age
- Not bear a physical or mental handicap that would preclude the safe handling of a weapon
- Not a convicted felon, as convicted felons are not allowed to possess a firearm
- Not been institutionalized for controlled substance abuse for the three years immediately preceding their application
- Does not regularly abuse alcohol or controlled substances
- Requests to carry a weapon for self-defense
- Has demonstrated proficiency with a firearm
- Is not legally disabled
- Has not been committed to a sanitarium for the five years immediately preceding the application
- Has not been convicted of a crime of domestic violence and met all sentencing requirements for the three years immediately preceding the application
- Has not been prohibited from perpetrating acts of domestic violence
- Is not prevented from purchasing or owning a weapon under any other state or federal laws
A conviction for a charge of carrying a concealed weapon that is not a gun is classified as a first-degree misdemeanor, which can include incarceration for as long as one year, fines as much as $1,000 or possibly both. Carrying a concealed weapon that is a gun is a third-degree felony, which can earn you as long as five years in state prison, fines of as much as $5,000 or possibly both.
Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon
In Florida, it is illegal for a person to be in possession of electronic weapons, firearms, ammunition or any other legally defined weapon if that person was previously:
- Convicted of a felony in any state
- Found guilty of perpetrating a felony against the United States
- Adjudicated of a crime that, if performed by an adult, would have been a felony
- Convicted of a criminal offense in any other state in the United States that would be deemed a felony in the state of Florida
- Convicted of any offense that is punishable by a sentence of one year or more in prison in any other state, territory or country that is a felony
The ownership of a gun by someone who is a convicted felon is rated as a second-degree felony. If found guilty of this crime, you might face as long as 15 years in state prison, a fine of as much as $10,000, or both. Under Florida laws, if your crimes were affiliated with a gang, then your sentence can be increased to a minimum of 10 years and a maximum of life in prison.
Florida Criminal Defense FirmDEDICATED TO DEFENDING YOUR RIGHTS
Beat Your Criminal Charges. Call Musca Law Today.
Whether you are fighting sex crime accusations or need to beat your DUI charges, our defense team is here to help. We bring decades of combined insight and experience to each and every case we take on. When you want your rights aggressively protected, be sure to turn to Musca Law.
Request a free case evaluation by calling our firm at (386) 269-9010. We are ready to help you.