“But that’s not what really happened!”
Battery can be one of the worst charges a person can face, in part because it can hinge entirely or almost entirely on the word of another person. In Florida, a simple battery can be as simple as an unwanted, intentional touch; no injury is necessary. In fact, you can actually be convicted of a battery for touching an object that is “closely associated” with someone’s person – a phone, a bag, car keys, or anything else that someone is holding or that is connected to their body in some way. Throwing an object that makes contact with someone could also constitute a battery. Ordinarily, these situations would result in a simple first degree misdemeanor charge. But sometimes, it can be much, much worse.
If you have a previous conviction for a battery of any level, a second charge can be a third degree felony. If the alleged victim was pregnant and the state thinks it can prove you “knew or should have known” that fact, it can be a second degree felony! These are just a few examples of the facts and circumstances that can greatly increase the potential punishment you might face for a battery charge.
In addition to the normal penalties for the offense itself, there are often other consequences for assault, battery, or other convictions involving violence. For example, nurses can lose their licenses. Felony-level convictions can, of course, result in a lost of civil rights including voting, firearms ownership and possession, and jury service. Loss of employment or loss of a security clearance required for employment can also result.
In addition, in Florida, battery charges are considered “enhanceable” offenses based your criminal history. As mentioned earlier, that means that entering a plea to or being convicted at trial of your pending battery charge can result in being charged with a felony if you should ever be charged with a battery again, even if the sole or primary evidence is only someone’s word!
How a Satellite Beach Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help
These charges can be good cases for trial. Often, the story the alleged victim told the police is not the whole story or even close to it. In addition to a simple dispute over whether the alleged crime occurred at all, whether the contact was consensual, or whether the contact was intentional, there can also be issues related to self-defense, defense of others, or several other theories of defense.
It is extremely important that you seek advice from an experienced criminal defense attorney who can advise you on your rights, penalties you might be facing, possible consequences outside the criminal courtroom, and any defenses you may have, as soon as possible. Locating key witnesses and evidence and preparing a trial defense early on in your case can be extremely critical elements in obtaining the best outcome possible. No one wants to face an impending trial without feeling like they have some idea of what to expect and a game plan in place. An experienced battery defense attorney, who has taken such cases to trial, can guide you and help you find the confidence to persevere through the process.
About Attorney Ruth Singer
Attorney Singer holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Florida. She also holds a J.D. from Florida A&M University College of Law, where she graduated at the top of her class. Attorney Singer clerked for an administrative law judge in the Drug Enforcement Administration in Arlington, VA, and worked as an Assistant Public Defender in Orlando, FL, before entering private practice. She is also admitted to practice in Oklahoma.
Attorney Singer is a dedicated and knowledgeable criminal defense attorney, with experience representing clients at both the trial and appellate levels. She has experience defending criminal cases through pretrial discovery, motions to suppress and dismiss, and at trial. As a former public defender, Attorney Singer strongly believes that the state must be held to its very high burden of proof. Attorney Singer aims to provide compassionate, client-focused legal representation and high-quality counsel that is accessible, affordable, and practical when it matters most.
Learn more about how The Singer Firm can help protect your future and the life you have built by scheduling a free consultation now at 321-804-3266.