BATTERY ATTORNEYS SERVING BRADENTON AND SARASOTA
DISCUSS YOUR CASE WITH A BRADENTON OR SARASOTA BATTERY ATTORNEY IN CONFIDENCE
Florida law establishes several different types of battery crimes. These crimes have different “elements” (facts the prosecution needs to prove), and battery crimes can range from first-degree misdemeanors to first-degree felonies. That said, if you are facing a battery charge, you need experienced legal representation, and you should speak with a Sarasota or Bradenton battery attorney promptly.
Understanding Florida’s Battery Crimes
Unlike assault charges (which may be classified as either simple assault or aggravated assault), battery charges can fall into several different categories. Battery crimes under Florida law include:
- First-degree misdemeanor battery (or “simple battery”)
- Domestic violence battery
- Domestic violence battery by strangulation
- Felony battery
- Aggravated battery
- Aggravated battery on a pregnant person
In addition, depending on the circumstances involved, a battery charge may be “reclassified” to a more serious offense. For example, when a simple battery is committed against a firefighter, police officer or EMT, it is reclassified from a first-degree misdemeanor to a third-degree felony. When an aggravated battery is committed against a firefighter, police officer or EMT, it is reclassified from a second-degree felony to a first-degree felony.
Even a simple battery committed by someone who has previously been convicted of a battery is reclassified as a third degree felony. That means you could face up to five years in prison for a subsequent simple battery.
Potential Defenses to Battery Charges
While there are several ways that prosecutors can pursue battery charges under Florida law, there are also several potential defenses available. When we evaluate your case, we will consider all possible defenses and prosecutorial immunities, including:
- Consent (including consent to mutual combat)
- Defense of others
- Defense of property
- Use of force under Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law
- Accidental or incidental contact
Another key defense strategy in many battery cases involves challenging the prosecution’s evidence of intent. Intent is an element of all battery crimes under Florida law. For example, if you caused someone bodily harm but did not intend to do so, you are not guilty of first-degree misdemeanor battery. This is because the crime requires evidence that you “[i]ntentionally cause[d] bodily harm to another person.”
Common Misconceptions About Battery Cases in Florida
Importantly, if an alleged victim decides that he or she doesn’t want a case prosecuted, this does not result in the defendant’s charges being dropped. Prosecutors can still move forward if they have the evidence they need to secure a conviction. Even if an alleged victim chooses not to testify, prosecutors may be able to use surveillance camera footage, cell phone videos, eyewitness testimony or other evidence to secure a conviction at trial.
Another common misconception about battery crimes is that they require physical harm. While some battery crimes require physical harm, others do not. For example, if you intentionally touched or struck another person against their will, prosecutors do not need to prove that you caused any harm to secure a conviction for a misdemeanor or felony offense.
Speak With a Sarasota or Bradenton Battery Attorney for Free Today
Are you facing a battery charge? If so, we encourage you to contact us promptly for a free consultation. Call 941-404-8909 or contact us online to speak with a Bradenton or Sarasota battery attorney in confidence as soon as possible.
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Fowler Law Group proudly represents the citizens of Sarasota and Manatee Counties as well as the surrounding Tampa Bay area. Our experienced team will help guide you through the judicial process and answer all of your questions with honesty and integrity. We understand the important nature of your call, and we will strive to return all calls within 24 hours. Contact us today by completing our online form or calling us at 941-404-8909.