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Law Enforcement Must Have Probable Cause to Search Your Vehicle in Florida

Posted December 29, 2017Criminal Defense
Have you been charged with a crime based on evidence that was secured by law enforcement in a search of your vehicle conducted at a traffic stop?  If the law enforcement officers did not have reasonable suspicion to make the traffic stop, and probable cause to justify the search your vehicle, then the search may have been illegal.  Evidence secured by law enforcement officers during an illegal search can be suppressed, which can significantly benefit your criminal defense arguments.

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Criminal Trespass: Understanding the Basics

Posted November 30, 2017Criminal Defense
In Florida, it is a crime to trespass upon another’s property.  Trespass may seem like a minor violation, but depending on the circumstances and the nature of the violation, the criminal trespass violation may be upgraded from a misdemeanor to a felony and expose you to substantial criminal penalties that include incarceration and fines.

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The Psychotherapist-Patient Privilege in Florida

Posted October 31, 2017Criminal Defense
In Florida, criminal defendants may be able to exclude damaging evidence from being introduced on the basis of an evidentiary privilege.  One privilege that often applies to Florida criminal defendants is the psychotherapist-patient privilege.

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Victims May Not Always Press Charges

Posted September 29, 2017Criminal Defense
If you have been involved in potentially criminal activity that engages a victim, you may be under the impression that — should the victim choose not to press charges — you can avoid the prospect of criminal prosecution altogether.  This is a common misconception, however.  The reality is a fair bit more nuanced.

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What Statements Are Not Admissible Into Criminal Evidence?

Posted August 31, 2017Criminal Defense
In Florida, not all statements are admissible into evidence.  The presence of admissibility rules is not a clear win or loss for the typical criminal defendant — both the prosecution and the criminal defendant must navigate the complexities of the rules of evidence and take steps to ensure that evidence favorable to their case is admitted, and take steps to ensure that evidence unfavorable to their case is deemed inadmissible.  To a degree, the evidence “game” could be considered the critical phase in determining each side’s eventual success at trial.

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Factors That Influence Sentencing in Florida

Posted July 31, 2017Criminal Defense
The Florida Sentencing Guidelines set minimum and maximum sentences for various criminal offenses. In Florida, as in many other states, however, sentencing depends on a hybrid system that involves the objective sentencing guidelines, the discretion of a judge, and a criminal punishment scoresheet that can have an enhancing or mitigatory effect on the sentence.

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Florida Has Limited Time to File a Charge Against You

Posted June 28, 2017Criminal Defense
In Florida, the criminal statute of limitations sets a prosecution deadline before which the State must commence with prosecution.  If the criminal statute of limitations deadline passes without the prosecution having been commenced, then your case may be dismissed.  Once the case has been dismissed, you cannot be exposed to criminal liability for the underlying charges.

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You Can Be Held Criminally Liable for Writing Checks Without Sufficient Funds

Posted May 26, 2017Criminal Defense
Florida law exposes those who intentionally write “bad checks” — in other words, checks that are issued with the understanding that the account does not have sufficient funds to be cashed by said check — to potential criminal liability, with penalties that vary depending on the circumstances of the case.

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Intoxication as a Defense in Florida Criminal Law

Posted April 24, 2017Criminal Defense
If you’ve been charged — or if you reasonably believe that you may soon be charged — with a crime, and you were intoxicated during the commission of the crime, then you may be able to assert an intoxication defense (depending on the circumstances of the intoxication) to prevent conviction.

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Common Defenses to a Battery Claim

Posted March 31, 2017Criminal Defense

In Florida, battery is defined as actual and intentional contact with another person without permission (which may or may not cause bodily harm).  Standard battery qualifies as a first-degree misdemeanor, and conviction may result in up to a year in jail time (or probation for up to a year).

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