In Florida, prosecutors have a specific amount of time in which to start the prosecution of their cases. For example, currently, cases involving second and third-degree felonies must be started within three years of when the offense was committed, while cases involving first-degree misdemeanors must be started within two years and second-degree misdemeanors must be started within one year.
A recent U.S. Supreme Court decision regarding Florida’s death penalty law sheds light on the importance of juries as part of the legal system. For years, many have argued that, in general, the death penalty should be deemed cruel and unfair, and thus should be prohibited under the US Constitution. However, that argument typically falls short at the federal level.
In general, a judge can require a convicted defendant to pay restitution as a condition of his or her parole or probation. If such restitution is not paid as ordered, the individual’s parole or probation can be revoked. Restitution orders can lead to serious consequences for a convicted defendant — particularly if he or she is unable to make the payment.
In the case of Williams v. State of Florida, Judge Lucas with the Second District considered the validity of the lower court’s decision to order Williams not to possess or consume alcohol as a special probation condition. Sentencing courts in Florida generally have wide-ranging discretion to impose such special conditions to an individual’s probation. However, as noted by Judge Lucas, such conditions must be reasonably related to rehabilitation – if they aren’t, they are not valid.
Individuals who have been in legal trouble in the past often seek to have their criminal records sealed or expunged for various reasons. However, it is important for you to know whether or not your case is eligible for expungement or sealing.
Probation in Florida is a privilege, not a right. Still, if someone who has been sentenced to probation is accused of violating the privilege, the prosecution is, at minimum, required to establish that the probationer “willfully and substantially” violated a condition of his or her sentence.
The death penalty has remained a controversial punitive measure since the inception of the United States. Currently, the U.S. remains one of just a handful of nations continuing to practice the execution of its most severe offenders – and reigns alongside China, Iran, Iraq and Saudi Arabia as one of the top five nations in terms of number of executions. Moreover, the state of Florida has carried out 400 executions so far in 2015, making it the second-highest ranking state for number of executions in the United States.
In light of upcoming proposed changes to Florida’s 10-year-old “stand your ground” law, it behooves us to review the components of this controversial law, what it means and how it is applied in the criminal defense context. As practitioners of criminal law, the “stand your ground” defense is one most often invoked in the home invasion context, specifically when a homeowner opts to use deadly force to protect his home and/or property.
According to data compiled by the Florida Department of Corrections, over 10,000 children have been charged with adult crimes within the state over the past five years. Sadly, this figure places the state of Florida at the top of the national list in terms of the number of children forced to face adult charges for their crimes – a statistic against which a Bradenton juvenile attorney will boldly fight.
A solid drug possession defense begins with a thorough review of the prosecution’s evidence, which an experienced criminal defense attorney will complete with an air of skepticism, particularly in light of Florida’s current ‘chain of custody’ laws.