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Criminal Defense Archives

Assault and battery basics

Assault and battery charges are serious criminal charges. In many situations, these two charges will go hand in hand so it is important for accused individuals to understand what they are. Assault refers to when one party places another party in fear of immediate harm. Battery occurs when one party physically strikes another party.

It is important to understand the basics of plea bargains

Plea bargains are an important part of the criminal justice system that every accused individual should understand. Plea negotiations are a way that criminal charges are resolved without the need for a trial. There are different types of plea negotiations that it is important for accused individuals to be familiar with when facing criminal charges and evaluating their options to address them.

Deputy charged with domestic battery

Domestic assault charges are both sensitive and serious charges which is why it is important to understand the legal resources available to parties involved in a domestic violence situation. Recently, a Hillsborough County Sheriff's Deputy was arrested and relieved of duty without pay following domestic assault allegations. The deputy was accused of choking and beating her spouse, as well as holding a gun to her wife's head.

Former law enforcement officer, son, facing battery allegation

Florida authorities in a city near Tampa arrested a former sheriff's deputy and his son on charges related to what the police described as a case of road rage. In addition to battery charges, police have filed other charges against the duo, including a criminal confinement charge.

Overview of collateral consequences to convictions

People who live in the Tampa area probably do not need to be told that getting convicted of a crime, even a misdemeanor, can carry with it serious consequences like jail time, fines and strict terms of probation. Additionally, there are court costs and other fees associated with these penalties.

How is assault and battery handled by the courts in Florida?

It is important to acknowledge that there is a distinction between the terms assault and battery and the two are handled as separate offenses in the courts in Florida. Assault requires the threat and fear of an imminent force and harm on a victim, while battery is unwelcome or unwanted touching, typically resulting in bodily injury to the victim, but also could be of a sexual nature as well.

Can a plea negotiation keep me from going to jail?

When a Florida resident is arrested for committing a crime, they will generally be arraigned in court. During their arraignment, the court will inquire as to what plea the individual will offer and although there can be alternate pleas offered individuals generally either claim to be guilty or not guilty. While an outright admission of guilt may preclude the need for a trial and may send a person to the punishment phase of their criminal processing, a not guilty plea may set them up for a longer endeavor into the criminal justice system.

Is there a criminal defense to an assault charge?

A number of defenses exist that may mitigate or overcome an assault or battery charge. However, the availability of each defense will turn on whether the facts of the case support its assertion. If a Florida resident fails to prove a defense and support it with evidence, then it may not serve to protect the individual from a criminal conviction. As such, readers who wish to learn how these and other defenses may support their cases are advised to speak with their criminal defense lawyers.

How to handle a plea bargain

You may be familiar with the phrase "copping a plea," which is commonly uttered in crime and courtroom movies and TV shows. Copping a plea refers to pleading guilty and accepting penalties for criminal charges in exchange for not going to trial. Negotiating this agreement is known as plea bargaining and it is typically the method by which sentences are decided.

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