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Firm Overview

Clearwater Attorneys Defending People Charged with Crimes

Being investigated or charged with a crime can be scary and overwhelming. Prosecutors must meet a high burden of proof to obtain a conviction, however, and charges do not guarantee convictions. Criminal cases are often complicated, though, and it is smart for anyone charged with a crime to seek the assistance of an attorney. If you are accused of violating the law, the skilled Clearwater criminal defense attorneys of Hanlon Law can inform you of your potential defenses and help you to strive for the best outcome available under the facts of your case. We regularly defend people charged with a variety of offenses, including drug crimes, violent crimes, theft, and sex crimes in Clearwater and cities throughout Florida.

Criminal Defense

When a person is charged with a crime, the prosecution must prove the person’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in order to show that a conviction is warranted. In other words, the evidence against the defendant must be so strong that a reasonable person could not come to any conclusion other than that the defendant committed the alleged crime. Conversely, criminal defendants do not bear a burden of proof and do not have to offer any evidence in their defense. In many cases, though, it is beneficial for them to offer affirmative defenses or point out flaws in the prosecution’s reasoning.

Drug Crimes

In Florida, it is illegal to have or sell certain substances, such as GHB, cocaine, heroin, fentanyl, and ecstasy. As such, people caught with these drugs can be charged with a variety of crimes, including drug trafficking. Trafficking carries mandatory minimum sentences, and therefore it is crucial that anyone faced with charges of trafficking or any other drug-related offense seek the assistance of a trusted Tampa criminal defense attorney.

Sex Crimes

Sex crimes, such as sexual misconduct, rape, possessing child pornography, traveling to meet a minor, engaging in lewd and lascivious conduct, sexual battery, and prostitution, are harshly punished. Additionally, people convicted of sex crimes typically have to register as sex offenders, which can impact where they can live and what jobs they can hold. Fortunately, there are often multiple measures people charged with sex crimes can take to avoid a conviction or a lengthy prison sentence.

Violent Crimes

Crimes that cause bodily harm, like rape, aggravated assault or battery, and murder are considered violent crimes. Many violent crimes require the prosecution to prove that the defendant either intended to cause the victim harm or meant to cause the victim to fear that harm was imminent. If the prosecution is unable to meet this burden, the defendant should not be found guilty.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence crimes are those that are committed by one person in a household or family relationship against another. People are deemed to be in a household or family relationship if they are married or used to be married, live together as a family, or are related by blood or marriage. Stalking, battery, assault, sexual assault, false imprisonment, and kidnapping are examples of domestic violence offenses.

Theft Crimes

In Florida, the unlawful taking of another person’s property is usually charged as either petit theft or grand theft. What charge is brought against a person largely depends on the value of the stolen object. The prosecution must not only establish the value of the taken item but also must show that the defendant meant to remove it from the owner’s possession or claim it as their own.

White Collar Crimes

White-collar crime refers to deceitful acts intended to deprive another party of their money or property. Embezzlement, counterfeiting, bribery, and Ponzi schemes are examples of white-collar crimes. While all white-collar crime charges should be taken seriously, some carry enhanced penalties as stipulated by the Florida White Collar Crime Victim Protection Act.


The act of operating a vehicle while impaired by the use of drugs or alcohol or with a blood-alcohol level of 08.% can result in DUI charges. First-time DUI offenses can result in a wide range of penalties, including fines, imprisonment, license suspension, and the mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device. The penalties generally increase with each DUI conviction after the first.

Meet with an Experienced Clearwater Criminal Defense Lawyer

People charged with crimes often worry that their rights and reputations will suffer permanent harm, but that is not always the case. If you are accused of a crime, it is smart to meet with an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your potential defenses. At Hanlon Law, our experienced Clearwater criminal defense lawyers can assess the circumstances surrounding your arrest and develop a strategy designed to help you seek a good result. We have an office in Clearwater and additional offices in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota, and Bradenton. You can reach us through our online form or by calling us at 727.289.0222 to set up a confidential and free meeting.

Client Reviews
As a practicing attorney, I was shocked to hear that a family member of mine was alleged to have committed a sex crime. Knowing full well the consequences this type of allegation can have on anyone and their future, I immediately reached out to William Hanlon for help... Jerry
Was on the ball. Remembered names, events, places, situations. Never need to re explain the situation. Keeps in touch through out the entire experience and keeps you feeling safe, comforted and protected. Fights hard. Worth every single penny. Would never settle for anything less than Will. Carrie
I was facing a charge that if convicted would carry two years in prison minimally. Not only was he empathetic and listening to what I had to say but he arranged with the prosecutor for my charges not to be filed under terms of a pre trial investigation. Would highly recommend. Alec
I am very happy for what he did for me. Always there when I needed him. Explained everything well. He Fights for his clients. He got me what I needed. Hes an excellent lawyer. Mutaz
Mr. Hanlon did what no other lawyer could do. Not only did he turn my criminal history into a thing of the past so I could move on, he was a loyal associate. No matter how bad the situation is, he has miraculously cleared me on every charge since he became my lawyer 5 years ago. I have the best lawyer that the legal system has to offer. I have had other really good lawyers try to get my business, but I know that no one can do a better job than William Hanlon. Jesse