Florida Assault Lawyer

Assault and battery is a serious charge that can lead to expensive fines or even imprisonment. There can be lasting effects of being convicted of assault, including restrictions on gun ownership and possible loss of voting rights. Many people who face this severe charge can feel at a loss for what to do or how to tell their version of an event. A trusted Florida assault lawyer could help guide them through this challenging time, starting with the first step of understanding this crime and how penalties can increase based on the circumstances. They could then help to guide the individual charged on how to best prepare for a defense against this kind of case and stand up for their rights in court. 

The Definition of Assault Includes Circumstances That Can Be Open to Interpretation

Many people charged with assault feel confused if they never had any physical contact with the person bringing the charge. This is because assault is defined as an attempt to cause physical injury to another. Assault is not the same as the criminal charge of battery, which occurs when an offender causes physical harm to the victim. Legally, assault and battery are different crimes with different penalties, even if those two crimes often happen at the same time. Assault can be an incomplete act—such as a swing and a miss—or a threat that feels substantial—such as a remark where the victim thinks that the offender can carry out the menacing statement. 

A criminal assault charge can be simple or aggravated based on the circumstances that surround it. Some key circumstances that lead to an aggravated assault charge are the use of a deadly weapon or if assault that occurs with the intent to commit a felony. The Aggravated Assault statute does not list specific things as deadly weapons, but instead defines them as deadly when their use is “likely to produce death or great bodily harm.” 

Assault is a misdemeanor, punishable by fines of up to $1,000 or imprisonment unless certain circumstances are met. While felony assault is punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. A proactive assault lawyer in Florida could review the circumstances of a specific case to determine the potential penalties someone may be facing upon conviction and ways to mitigate them. 

Collecting Specific Facts & Statements from Witnesses Is Essential to Building a Defense

Every criminal case is unique, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to defending criminal charges. However, in an assault case, the state must show: 

  1. A threat by word or act
  2. To do violence to another
  3. Coupled with an apparent ability to do so 
  4. Performance of some act that creates
  5. A well-founded fear in the other person that violence is imminent. 

At first, these elements may seem clear. However, there can be a lot of differences of opinion over when a fear is “well-founded” or when an alleged offender has an “apparent ability” to do violence. This makes collecting specific facts about the event essential, as well as interviewing witnesses who can share their recollections of the statements made. 

Often, the circumstances involved in an assault case can be disputed or may feel exaggerated by the alleged victim. This is why strategies used by attorneys that show a lack of intent by the person charged can be effective. Timing is essential in an assault case, especially if videos were captured on social media platforms that have timers on how long content is live like Snapchat or Instagram Stories. A seasoned assault attorney in Florida can use their expertise in this field to help collect and preserve it. 

A Florida Assault Attorney Could Help Protect Your Rights

Details are essential in an assault charge. Feeling like you are not getting all of them or struggling to collect and preserve them can feel overwhelming. But you do not have to face this alone. A Florida assault lawyer could help. 

By advising you about the law, ensuring that you understand the law, and guiding you on your options, a knowledgeable legal professional can help you understand all the details. And they can take those details and use them to advocate for your rights in plea deals and in court. Contact the Platinum Criminal Defense Law Frim today for a free case consultation and get the reassurance you need.