Destin Domestic Violence Attorney
If you’ve been charged with the crime of domestic violence in Destin, you need to take the matter seriously. You could face jail or prison, fines, a criminal history, and mandatory participation in an anger management program. It can also affect child custody or visitation. The domestic violence lawyers at the Florida Criminal Defense Legal Group believe that every client is innocent until proven guilty and deserves the best defense available.
Call our Destin domestic violence lawyers for a proactive legal defense.
Domestic Violence Under Florida Law
Under Florida law, domestic violence is not a separate crime. It is a special categorization that’s applied to violent crimes when the victim is a family member or household member. Florida statute 741.28 defines these relationships as “spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married.”
So, if you’re charged with a battery on someone who meets the above definition, for example, it is categorized as a domestic battery.
Types of Domestic Crimes in Florida
Crimes related to domestic violence typically include the following:
- Domestic Assault – The imminent threat of violence.
- Domestic Battery – Unwanted physical contact, such as grabbing, pushing, striking, etc.
- Aggravated Assault – The imminent threat of violence with a deadly weapon.
- Aggravated Battery – Battery that involves the use of a weapon or ends up in permanent disfigurement or a hospital stay.
- Stalking – A pattern of behavior meant to harass or intimidate the victim.
- Aggravated Stalking – Stalking where the pattern includes the threat of violence or stalking when a restraining order is in place.
- Battery on a Pregnant Woman – Striking a woman who the defendant knows or should know is pregnant.
- Sexual Battery – Forced sexual contact with the victim.
- Violation of a Restraining Order – Contacting the alleged victim after the defendant has been served with a restraining order.
There are other categories of domestic crimes, but these are some of the most common in the state of Florida. Some of these crimes are misdemeanors, punishable by up to 60 days in jail for a second-degree misdemeanor or one year in jail for a first-degree misdemeanor. On the other hand, many are felonies, punishable by five years in prison for a third-degree felony, 15 years for a second-degree felony, and 30 years for a first-degree felony.
Important Things to Remember After Being Arrested for a Destin Domestic Violence Charge
As Destin domestic violence lawyers, the Florida Criminal Defense Legal Group wants you to contact our criminal defense firm as soon as possible. In the meantime, it’s important to keep these things in mind.
You Have the Right to Remain Silent
Many individuals talk themselves into an arrest, or they make their situation worse by trying to talk to law enforcement officers. Making a statement could be the difference between a conviction and getting your charges dropped. It’s usually a better idea to exercise your right to remain silent and contact a domestic violence attorney.
Contacting the Victim Could Result in Additional Charges
You may believe that if you aren’t subject to a restraining order for your domestic violence case, it’s fine to speak to the alleged victim. But trying to contact the alleged victim of a crime could cause the state attorney to add a witness tampering charge to your existing domestic violence charges.
You May Be Served with a Restraining Order
If there is a domestic violence injunction — also referred to as a restraining order, no-contact order, or protection order — violating it could lead to your re-arrest and additional charges. Many individuals who are going through breakups or divorce often find it difficult to respect the injunction, but getting arrested for violation of a restraining order will complicate your domestic violence case.
You Have the Right to an Attorney
Florida criminal law is particularly harsh when it comes to domestic violence issues. The Destin domestic violence attorneys at Florida Criminal Defense Legal Group can review your case and develop a solid legal defense for you. Trying to talk your way out of an arrest can lead to bigger problems if your case goes to court. Contact our law office today.
FAQ About Domestic Violence in Destin, FL
The Florida Criminal Defense Legal Group has represented hundreds of clients for domestic violence crimes in Destin. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions our attorneys hear from our clients.
What are the benefits of hiring a domestic violence attorney?
A domestic violence lawyer can review the probable cause that the police submitted to the state attorney’s office and look for procedural errors or weaknesses in the case. Additionally, they can subpoena and depose witnesses to determine the strength of their testimony. If the case against you is strong, a lawyer can represent you in negotiations with the state attorney. Finally, if the case goes to court, your lawyer will provide you with a diligent defense.
Can domestic violence charges in Destin be filed as a felony?
This depends on the type of underlying crime you’ve been accused of committing. For instance, violations of restraining orders are charged as a misdemeanor the first time. Still, they can be charged as a felony if the defendant violates the injunction a second time against the same alleged victim. Spousal abuse can be either a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the circumstances.
Will my case go to court?
Not necessarily. In some cases, the alleged victim decides to drop the charges. Other times, the attorney discovers a flaw in the prosecutorial case and is able to get some or all of the evidence dropped. If the case against you is strong, your lawyer may recommend that you accept a negotiated plea.
Domestic Violence Defense in Destin
The Florida Criminal Defense Legal Group provides affirmative and effective representation to individuals who have been accused of domestic crimes in Destin, FL. If you’ve been accused of domestic violence, you need to consider the impact that it could have on your life. Even if you avoid jail and fines, having a domestic violence charge on your criminal history could have life-changing consequences.
Contact the Florida Criminal Defense Legal Group to speak to a Destin criminal defense attorney about the charges you’re facing.