Any allegation of a violent crime can have serious consequences, including jail or prison sentences, fines, a criminal record, an inability to apply for certain jobs or professions, an inability to receive certain governmental funding, and/or a loss to possess or purchase a firearm or weapon. Some of the most serious violent crimes in Florida can include:
Gainesville Violent Crime Lawyer
If you have been charged with a violent crime in Gainesville, or any of the surrounding areas in Florida, including Ocala, Alachua, and Lake City, contact the Galigani Law Firm. Dean Galigani is an experienced criminal defense attorney Board Certified in Criminal Trial Law and is evaluated for professionalism, tested for expertise in all areas of Florida law, including violent crimes. Call the Galigani Law Firm today for a free consultation at (352) 375-0812 to discuss the facts of your case.
Violent Crimes Information Center in Florida
Back to Top
Common Violent Crime Offenses in Florida
Some of the most common violent crime offenses in Florida include the following:
- Assault - Fla. Stat. § 784.011 – an individual can be charged with this offense if they intentionally act with violence, or threaten to cause violence against another person. In order to be charged with this offense, the alleged offender has to be capable of committing the violent act and the intended victim must be fearful the individual is going to commit the act in the near future. This offense is usually punishable as a misdemeanor of the second degree.
- Battery - BatteryFla. Stat. § 784.03 – an individual can be charged with this offense if they intentionally touch another person against their will or to cause harm to that person. This offense is punishable as a felony of the third degree.
- Aggravated Assault - Fla. Stat. § 784.021 – an individual can be convicted of this offense if they commit an assault with a deadly weapon without intending to kill the victim. A person can also be charged with this offense if they intend to commit a felony against the victim. This offense is punishable as a felony of the third degree.
- Aggravated Battery - Fla. Stat. § 784.045 – an individual can be charged with this offense if they commit a battery with a deadly weapon and intentionally or knowingly cause permanent disability, disfigurement or great bodily harm to the victim. A person can also be charged with this offense if they commit a battery against a pregnant woman the alleged offender knew or should have known was pregnant. This offense is punishable as a felony of the second degree.
- Felony Battery - Fla. Stat. § 784.041 – an individual can be charged with this offense if they commit a battery and cause great bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement to the victim. This offense is punishable as a felony of the third degree.
- Robbery - Fla. Stat. § 812.13 – an individual can be charged with this offense if they take money or personal property from another person with the intent to permanently deprive the person of the items. Additionally, the offender must use force, violence or cause fear in the victim while committing the offense. If a weapon was used, the offense was robbery in the first degree. If no weapon was used, the offense is robbery in the second degree. This offense is punishable as either a felony of the first or second degree.
- Manslaughter – Fla. Stat. § 782.07 – an individual can be charged with this offense if they negligently kill another human being without lawful justification (like self-defense) and the killing is not excusable homicide or murder. This offense is punishable a felony of the second degree.
- Aggravated Manslaughter – Fla. Stat. § 782.07 – an individual commits this offense if they commit manslaughter against an elderly person, disabled adult, child under the age of 18, a law enforcement officer, firefighter, emergency medical technician (EMT), or paramedic. This offense is punishable as a felony of the first degree.
Back to Top
Florida’s Definition for Bodily Harm
The term “serious bodily injury” in Florida means personal injury to another person that creates a substantial risk of that person to suffer serious disfigurement, impairment, or loss of the function of any limb or organ.
Back to Top
Penalties for Violent Crimes in Florida
According to Fla. Stat. §§ 775.082 and 775.083, the penalties for violent crime offenses in Florida can vary. The penalties listed in the Florida Statutes are the statutory minimum penalties and can increase or have mandatory minimum sentences depending on the offense, the victim, where the offense occurred, whether a weapon was used during the commission of the offense, and whether the offender has a previous criminal conviction.
- A misdemeanor of the second degree can result in a jail sentence up to 60 days and/or a fine up to $500.
- A misdemeanor of the first-degree offense can lead to a jail sentence up to one year and/or a fine not more than $1,000.
- A conviction for a felony of the third degree can result in a prison sentence up to five years and/or a fine not more than $5,000.
- Felonies of the second degree can lead to a prison sentence up to 15 years and/or a fine not in excess of $10,000.
- A conviction for a felony of the first-degree offense can lead to a prison sentence up to 30 years or life and/or a fine up to $10,000.
Back to Top
Possible Florida Defenses to Violent Crimes
Your Gainesville criminal defense attorney may be able to help you identify certain defenses to your violent crimes charge that can reduce your charges or result in a complete dismissal of your case. However, the following defenses do not apply to every situation, and whether they will apply to your circumstances depend on the facts that are unique to your case. Therefore, it is important to consult with your attorney who can help you determine whether a defense is applicable to your situation.
- Defense of Others – Non-deadly force can be used to protect a third person from an attack by another person if the force was reasonably necessary. Deadly force may be used if the attack would likely result in death or serious bodily injury to the third party.
- Defense of Property – Deadly force may be used to protect one’s home, residence or occupied vehicle against an intruder, and force may be used if an individual reasonably believes their property is about to be damaged by another person.
- Justification – This defense can be used if you commit an act that would be considered a criminal offense under normal circumstances, but is not because the conduct was authorized by law or was necessary in an emergency situation to prevent public or private injury.
- Lack of Intent – Many times intent is a required element to committing a violent crime. If you did not have the required intent to commit the crime, you may be able to use lack of intent as a defense to the criminal charges against you.
- Self Defense – Deadly force can be used to protect one’s self from an attack by another person if the individual reasonably believed the other person’s conduct was going to result in death or serious bodily injury. Non-deadly force can also be used to protect one’s self from an attack by another person.
Back to Top
Florida Resources for Violent Crimes
Florida Statutes Online - This website contains all of Florida’s statutes pertaining to crimes in Florida. This link is direct to Chapter 784, which pertains to assault and battery offenses and penalties.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement – Crime Rates – This Florida governmental crime prevention unit provides information on violent crime statistics and violent crime reports for counties throughout Florida, including Alachua County. The Gainesville office of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) can be contacted at:
Phone: (352) 373-0566
Victim Assistance Office – Florida Department of Corrections – The Florida Department of Corrections provides assistance to victims of crime committed by inmates or offenders who have been released on community supervision or parole. The law enforcement unit also notifies victims of an offender’s release and provides resources for victims, including counseling, support groups, crisis intervention, and crimes compensation.
Alachua County Sheriff’s Office – The sheriff’s office in Alachua County provides access to the county’s most wanted criminals, information on crime reports in the county and links to victim services and crime prevention. The sheriff’s office is located at:
2621 SE Hawthorne Rd
Gainesville, Florida 32641
Phone: (352) 367-4000
Back to Top
Galigani Law Firm | Florida Violent Crime Attorney
Contact the Galigani Law Firm today for a consultation about your violent offense throughout Alachua County in Florida. Dean Galigani is an experienced Gainesville criminal attorney who will make every effort to help you avoid the most serious penalties and repercussions to your alleged offense.
Contact the Galigani Law Firm at (352) 375-0812 for a consultation about your alleged violent crime throughout the counties in Florida, including Starke in Bradford County, Macclenny in Baker County, Lake Butler in Union County, Ocala in Marion County, Trenton in Gilchrist County, Lake City in Columbia County, Florida.