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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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When Does Accidental Possession Turn to Theft?

Posted February 27, 2017Criminal Defense

In Florida, a charge of theft can be difficult for criminal defendants to understand, particularly in edge cases where the circumstances surrounding the purported theft are atypical.  Quite often, defendants are confused as to how theft applies to situations in which an item is not so much stolen as it is accidentally possessed.  To better understand the point at which mere accidental possession transforms into theft, it will be beneficial to examine the foundational Florida law concerning theft — let’s take a quick look.

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The Huffington Post: Fowler Law Group Featured on The Huffington Post

Posted February 24, 2017Criminal Defense

Fowler Law Group has been featured on The Huffington Post regarding the best marketing practices to establish a new law firm.

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Cell Phone Searches Not Allowed Without a Warrant

Posted January 30, 2017Criminal Defense

In today’s highly-mobile computing climate, our cell phones are just as likely to contain sensitive information – legally relevant and otherwise – as our home computers and file cabinets containing secured paper documents.  That our cell phones have now become a repository of critical personal information is a simple and unavoidable reality, and courts in every state have wrestled with the issue of how to regulate law enforcement access to such information. 

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Assault vs. Battery: What is the Difference?

Posted January 23, 2017Criminal Defense

In common parlance, the terms “assault” and “battery” are often used interchangeably or together as a combined concept, as though the two are necessarily linked from a legal perspective – this is incorrect, however.  Assault and battery are two separate and distinct legal claims.  Though they are frequently seen together, they are not fundamentally connected as a matter of law.

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Drug Possession Can Lead to a Trafficking Conviction

Posted December 28, 2016Criminal Defense

Across the United States, drug laws tend to be implemented in a rather overbroad and strict manner, making it difficult for offenders to avoid a serious conviction in certain circumstances.  Florida law presents unique difficulties in this regard.  In the state of Florida, drug possession can lead to inflated charges of drug trafficking, even if you do not evidence an intent to sell, distribute, or otherwise transfer the drug to another person.

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