DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASES
In Miami and throughout the state of Florida, if the police or paramedics respond to what appears to be a domestic violence case, the police are required under Florida law to arrest the alleged perpetrator, even if the alleged victim does not want that person to be arrested. This often leads to false arrests or arrests for relatively minor incidents. Individuals who are arrested or charged with a Florida domestic violence offense may face public embarrassment and harsh penalties.
Florida state prosecutors take a tough “pro-prosecution” stance against alleged domestic violence offenders; therefore, it is vital to have an aggressive and skilled Miami domestic violence defense attorney upholding your rights. After all, your future may depend on it.
If convicted, the consequences of domestic violence are serious and can have a lasting impact on your life. If you are accused, charged, and eventually convicted of committing acts of domestic violence, you are facing an uncertain future.
While domestic violence situations should be avoided altogether, sometimes situations occur that involve false allegations or dramatizations of what really happened between two people in the household. A lack of witnesses could lead to both parties telling entirely different sides of the story. Knowing how to handle the situation and overcome it is important for anyone who is facing such a serious slew of charges involving domestic acts of violence.
DEFINITION OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IN FLORIDA
Under Florida law, domestic violence refers to any form of criminal offense by one family or household member resulting in physical injury or death of another member of the family or household. The state’s definition of “family or household member” is relatively broad and is not limited to persons currently residing together within the home. It includes:
- Former spouses
- Anyone related by blood
- Anyone related by marriage
- Persons currently or formerly residing together as if a family
- Individuals who have a child together
- And more
In most situations, however, the individuals must be currently living in the same dwelling or must have resided together in the past.
Florida’s domestic violence statute covers the following forms of domestic violence:
- Assault, including sexual assault and aggravated assault – Threatening an individual with a weapon, such as a knife or a firearm, even if it is not used
- Battery, including sexual battery and aggravated battery – Physically attacking another person with your hands, a weapon, and/or sexually battering someone
- Stalking or aggravated stalking – Stalking an individual in person, at their place of employment, over the phone, or on social media sites
- Kidnapping – Kidnapping an individual from their home or anywhere else and taking them with you, and/or falsely imprisoning someone in the commission of another felony
- False imprisonment – Holding an individual against their will
- And more
These and other acts of assault and violence can lead to criminal charges, possible prison sentences, and fines and fees that would need to be paid to the court system by the defendant. If you know that you did not take part in any of these illegal activities, but you are being accused of committing some of these acts, you must reach out to a Miami domestic violence attorney. Even if you did get violent with someone you know, you still need to hire an attorney.
The attorney needs to know more about the accusations made against you and where those accusations originated from. For example, a former partner may be bitter that you decided to leave the relationship, thus causing the individual to make up stories and lies to use against you in an attempt to get you in legal trouble.
PENALTIES FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CONVICTIONS IN FLORIDA
Depending upon the severity of your alleged Florida domestic violence offense, you can be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony crime. If convicted, you may face any of the following penalties:
- Jail or prison time
- Mandatory community service
- Mandatory counseling, including anger management training or parenting classes
A Miami domestic violence arrest may also result in your being prohibited from contacting the alleged domestic violence victim and/or being prohibited from entering your own home.
HOW DOES SOMEONE WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CHARGES GET OUT OF THE SITUATION?
While the Miami criminal defense attorney cannot guarantee that a client’s charges will get dropped by the prosecution, the attorney will fight for the client to attempt to have charges dropped due to a lack of substantial evidence.
If there is more than enough evidence to prove that a client is guilty of committing certain acts because those acts were recorded or because injuries sustained by the victim match up with scratches and bruises on the defendant, a different approach may be taken by the attorney, which may involve going over the option of accepting a plea deal for a reduced charge. The criminal defense attorney is all about working for the client and doing what is best for the client, whether that person is right or wrong in this situation.
FORMER PROSECUTOR DEFENDS INDIVIDUALS AGAINST FLORIDA DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CHARGES
Even if you have no prior criminal record, a felony conviction for domestic violence cannot be expunged from your record. As a result, this can negatively affect your ability to get a job, housing, or credit in the future; however, an experienced Florida domestic violence lawyer can often negotiate to have the domestic violence charges against you reduced to a lesser charge that would allow future expungement of your criminal record.
Unfortunately, too many individuals who are accused of domestic violence fail to procure an aggressive defense. They may mistakenly believe that they have no choice but to plead guilty and accept the consequences. If you are accused of domestic violence, you should never attempt to navigate the Florida legal system alone. An experienced Miami criminal defense attorney can help you sort through the legalities and defend your future.
Chad Piotrowski is a qualified and veteran Miami domestic violence defense attorney with valuable experience as a former state prosecutor. He understands how Florida state prosecutors operate and can use this to your advantage in defending you against your Florida domestic violence charges. In addition, Miami domestic violence attorney, Chad Piotrowski, was responsible for training new attorneys to the Domestic Violence Unit and even helped write the training manual used today.
If you are accused of domestic violence in Miami-Dade County, Broward County, Palm Beach County, or anywhere in Florida, contact Chad Piotrowski today at 305-912-5901 to arrange for a confidential review of your Florida domestic violence case.