Assault with a Deadly Weapon
If you have been charged with assault with a deadly weapon, you need an experienced and skilled Melbourne gun charges lawyer to defend you. John A. Spellacy, PLLC has a proven track record of success in defending clients facing gun charges.
In Florida, assault with a deadly weapon (also called aggravated assault) is defined as simple assault with the addition of using a deadly weapon without intending to kill another person. State law defines a “deadly weapon” as any object that is used or could potentially be used to inflict serious bodily harm or cause death to another person. Apart from firearms and knives, Florida law classifies certain items as “deadly weapons,” including solid objects capable of causing severe injury or fatality through striking.
What Are The Penalties For Assault With A Deadly Weapon In Florida?
If convicted of assault with a deadly weapon in Florida, it is a third-degree felony, and you can face a range of penalties, depending on the circumstances of your case.
- Minimum Penalties: There is a three-year minimum mandatory sentence if a firearm was used and fines up to $5,000. If a firearm was used, the minimum prison sentence could be extended to a maximum of 25 years, contingent on factors such as the type of firearm used, whether it was discharged, or if someone sustained gunshot injuries.
- Maximum Penalties: The penalties for a third-degree felony include a maximum of five years in prison and fines up to $5,000. If the alleged victim was a law enforcement officer, a firefighter, or an emergency medical technician, a third-degree felony can be upgraded to a second-degree felony. Second-degree felony convictions can result in fines of up to $10,000 and 15 years in prison. An assault with a deadly weapon charge can also be a first-degree felony based on factors, including the type of weapon used, the perpetrator’s intent, and the surrounding circumstances of the incident.
The Burden Of Proof Is On The Prosecution
As with any criminal case, the prosecution must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the defendant committed the crime they were charged with. The elements that the prosecution must prove include the following:
- Your mindset when the offense occurred.
- You intentionally and unlawfully threatened to hurt someone else.
- When you made the threat, you had the present ability to fulfill it.
- Your ability to follow through with the threat.
- You possessed a deadly weapon at the time of the crime.
- You were armed with a deadly weapon.
- You caused fear in the alleged victim.
- The alleged victim had a credible fear that you would commit a violent act against them.
By challenging or exposing flaws in the prosecution’s arguments, you can create doubt in the judge or jury’s minds, leading to a situation where they may find it appropriate to deliver a not-guilty verdict.
What Are The Defenses To Assault With A Deadly Weapon Charges?
When facing serious charges like these, you need a Melbourne gun charges lawyer with the experience and skill set to mount an effective defense. I will work to formulate a suitable defense that may include one or more of the following:
False allegations – The defense may argue that the alleged victim misidentified the perpetrator or the accusation was made falsely out of revenge or spite.
No reasonable fear – The prosecution must prove the alleged victim was legitimately fearful. If the individual laughed off the supposed threat or the defense can demonstrate that a reasonable person would not have taken the threat seriously, it can create doubt in the case.
Conditional threat – The prosecution must prove that there was an imminent threat against the alleged victim. The defense could demonstrate that a threat was made based on the condition of another’s actions.
Defense of self or others – If the alleged threat was in the defense of yourself or another individual who was being threatened, it can demonstrate a valid reason for your actions and potentially support your case.
What Should I Do If I Have Been Charged With Assault With A Deadly Weapon?
If you have been charged with assault with a deadly weapon, contact a legal professional right away. As an attorney who focuses exclusively on criminal defense, I have the skills and experience to defend your assault with a deadly weapons charge effectively. I will carefully examine all the evidence presented by the state, checking if it was obtained legally while respecting your rights and assessing whether you may have any self-defense or defense of others claims.
I recently worked with a client who left this review about my work on his case:
“I highly recommend John to anyone who needs a really good lawyer. He was efficient and kept in contact at all times. A true professional.”
Find The Melbourne Gun Charges Lawyer You Need At The Law Office Of John A. Spellacy, PLLC
I will work tirelessly to create a strong defense strategy to help you achieve the best possible outcome. This may include getting the charges dropped, reduced to lesser offenses, or obtaining a less severe sentence. Contact my firm today to schedule a free case evaluation.