After their son was arrested for L & L Battery (statutory rape) in Fort Walton Beach, JL’s parents called me. They knew that getting an effective criminal defense attorney involved early on was an extremely important first step in protecting their son.
When I was retained, JL was still in jail. After meeting with him at the jail, I scheduled a bond hearing. At the bond hearing, I was able to get him released from jail.
With this case, I had my work cut out for me. My client was facing up to 15 years in prison for L & L Battery along with lifetime registration as a sexual offender. Defending a sexual assault case requires skill and experience to do it right. One wrong move or mistake and the client could go to prison.
Sex Crimes Charges Are Difficult—But Not Impossible—to Defend
I developed a defense strategy based on the relationship between my client and the alleged victim. After outlining some, but not all, of this strategy with the Prosecutor, she indicated that she was willing to try and negotiate a plea bargain.
I told the Prosecutor that the following conditions were non-negotiable:
- No jail or prison time
- No sexual offender registration
- No felony conviction on his record
Of course, the Prosecutor didn’t want to agree to any of those conditions. Her first offer was a prison sentence with registration and a felony conviction. But after continued negotiations, JL was able to resolve his case with no incarceration, no sex offender designation, and no felony on his record.
You Can Count on My Experience
I honestly don’t know the full reason why the Prosecutor gave me everything I wanted. I’d like to think it had something to do with the fact that I have a lot of experience defending sexual assault cases, and a long track record of success, including against this Prosecutor.
At Flaherty & Merrifield, I have built a reputation as a lawyer that fights for my clients. And JL is a free man today because of that reputation that I’ve worked so hard to build.
If you or a loved one has been charged with L & L Battery, or any sexual assault allegation in Fort Walton Beach, call Flaherty & Merrifield 24/7 at (850) 243-6097 and let’s talk about how I can help you.