Fort Walton Beach Aggravated Assault Attorney
If you were recently arrested for Aggravated Assault in Fort Walton Beach, I understand how nervous you must be. It is perfectly normal if you are worried about whether you are going to prison, or whether you will have a felony on your record. If you are in the military, your career is on the line with this felony arrest.
If I can offer a few words of encouragement, let me just say that while Aggravated Assault cases are serious, they can also be won. We have had a lot of success getting Aggravated Assault cases dismissed or reduced. We have developed effective legal strategies over the last 13 years that we continue to utilize to keep our clients out of jail and off the convicted felon registry.
Understanding the difference between Assault and Battery
We are frequently asked about the difference between assault and battery charges in Fort Walton Beach. The confusion comes from the fact that some states use the terms assault and battery differently than Florida does. Under Florida law, it is Assault to threaten to hit someone. It is Battery to hit them.
Aggravated Assault Under Florida Law
Florida Statute 784.021 defines Aggravated Assault as follows:
“An aggravated assault is an assault with a deadly weapon without intent to kill, or with an intent to commit a felony.”
Aggravated Assault is a third degree felony. It is punishable by up to 5 years in prison. If the deadly weapon used in the assault was a firearm, there is a minimum mandatory sentence of 3 years in prison. If the person who was threatened was a police officer, there is also a 3 year mandatory prison sentence.
What can an attorney do for me if I am charged with Aggravated Assault in Fort Walton Beach?
The first thing to keep in mind is that you need an experienced criminal defense attorney who practices locally. Aggravated Assault is the type of case where an effective Fort Walton Beach criminal defense attorney can make all the difference in what the eventual outcome is in your case.
At Flaherty Defense Firm, we have defended many clients accused of Aggravated Assault. While every case is different, here are just a few of the issues we will look at in order to develop the most effective legal strategy:
- Whether there is a valid self defense argument to make. If the facts support self defense, it can be used to potentially win your case at trial.
- Unlike Battery, where the fact that someone was struck is usually enough to establish that the crime was committed, with Assault, the State will need to have the cooperation of the alleged victim in testifying that they felt fear, which is required in order to prove any form of Assault.
- The State must be able to prove that you had the ability to carry out the threat. For example, if you threaten someone in an email, you can’t be found guilty of Aggravated Assault because it is impossible to carry out a physical threat through the computer.
- The State will be required to produce the item they are claiming is a deadly weapon and they must be able to prove that the item was in fact a deadly weapon.
The list above is just a few examples of the types of issues we will look at carefully as we prepare your defense. If we can raise enough doubts in the prosecutor’s mind about whether they can prove the charge beyond a reasonable doubt, it is possible that the charge will either be reduced or dismissed.
Your Fort Walton Beach Aggravated Assault Attorney
Prosecutors do not like to dismiss these cases. That is why it is so important to have the right team on your side. Flaherty Defense Firm has been defending clients accused of Aggravated Assault in Fort Walton Beach for over 13 years. We have the expertise and the proven track record of success to get results for our clients.
If you’d like to see what a team like ours can do for you, give us a call.
If you are ready to put an experienced Aggravated Assault Attorney in Fort Walton Beach to work for you, call Flaherty Defense Firm today at (850) 243-6097 for a free and confidential consultation.