At Hanlon Law, Clearwater violent crime lawyer Will Hanlon represents defendants who are fighting charges of aggravated assault or similar offenses, among other crimes. These are serious charges that require a vigorous and comprehensive strategy to protect your rights. Attorney Will Hanlon can guide you through the plea bargaining process and the criminal justice system, relying on more than two decades of experience. Hanlon Law works diligently to get our clients’ charges dropped or reduced whenever possible, and we have a strong record of achieving favorable results for defendants throughout the Tampa Bay region who enlist our assistance.Assault, Battery, and Aggravated Assault
In Florida, assault may be charged when a person intentionally threatens another person with physical violence, through either words or actions. This is distinct from battery, which is charged when someone actually follows through on that threat.
An assault becomes aggravated under state law if the threat involves the use of a deadly weapon or the commission of a felony. Aggravated assault is generally a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison and $5,000 in fines. If a gun was wielded during the incident, the court must impose at least the mandatory minimum prison term of three years. If a gun was discharged, the mandatory minimum sentence may increase to up to 20 years. A person convicted of aggravated assault may also be required to pay for any monetary losses that the victim suffered as a result of the crime. Other consequences include a criminal record that may make it hard to find or keep a job.
An aggravated assault becomes a second-degree felony if it is committed against a “special victim.” These include police officers, emergency medical care providers, licensed security officers, public transportation operators, and code inspectors, among others. Those offenses carry higher possible fines and a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison. Aggravated battery against a special victim is a first-degree felony, with a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in cases of battery against a police officer.
The burden is on police and prosecutors throughout a criminal case to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person charged with the crime is guilty. In aggravated assault cases, this means proving that the defendant actually had the ability to carry out the threat and do violence to the victim. They also need to show that the victim had a well-founded fear that the violence was imminent. Aggravated assault charges often result from simple disagreements that escalate but may not necessarily rise to the level of the crime.Enlist a Clearwater Lawyer to Fight a Violent Crime Charge
Attorney Will Hanlon understands the complicated legal issues that may arise in cases involving assault and aggravated assault. He is proud to safeguard the rights of his clients and help each of them move toward a resolution of their case that protects their freedom and future. If you have been charged with a crime in the Tampa Bay area, you should not hesitate to schedule a free consultation with Clearwater violent crime attorney Will Hanlon. He also assists defendants in Tampa and St. Petersburg, among other surrounding cities. Call us at 727.897.5413 or contact us online to set up an appointment to discuss your case. Will Hanlon also can represent people who need a DUI attorney or assistance with fighting charges of drug crimes, domestic violence, sex crimes, or other offenses.