Fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer in a motor vehicle is a serious crime across Tampa and the rest of the United States of America. If you are caught fleeing and eluding for any reason, you could face serious consequences for your actions.
Fleeing and eluding a law enforcement officer isn’t always the newsreel car-chase that we have come to expect from movies. In fact, you could be charged with regular fleeing and eluding if you fail to come to a halt at the request of a law enforcement officer. These charges become aggravated when you cause or risk serious bodily injury or death with your fleeing and eluding. Aggravated fleeing and eluding carries even more serious consequences.
Additionally, a Tampa court will not be able to withhold adjudication in an aggravated fleeing and eluding case, nor will you have the opportunity to receive a suspended sentence. This means that if you were to enter a plea, you face the fate of a convicted felon. These are charges that you will be unable to have expunged or sealed even with the help of a criminal defense lawyer. This means they will remain on your criminal record forever.
This is why it is so important to secure representation by a criminal defense attorney with the correct skills, knowledge, and ability to fight your corner before it gets to the point of entering a plea. Getting the charges against you dismissed or reduced is your only chance of avoiding being branded a felon for the rest of your days.
Here at The Law Place in Tampa, we have amassed 75 years of combined experience between our team defending our clients. Our attorneys are well-versed in the laws surrounding fleeing and eluding a law enforcement officer, and we have achieved dismissed or reduced sentences for many people before you. Please get in touch with our office for a free no-obligation consultation if you would like more information. Our phone lines are always open.
If you have been charged with fleeing to elude, call today on (941) 444-4444.
Florida’s Aggravated Fleeing and Eluding Statute
The specific laws surrounding aggravated fleeing and eluding of a law enforcement officer are contained in Florida Statute 316.1935.
This states that, in order to be charged with aggravated fleeing, the prosecution must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that:
- The defendant was driving the motor vehicle involved in an accident.
- The defendant was the driver in an accident, which resulted in property damage, serious bodily injury, or death.
- The defendant was or should have been aware of their part in the accident.
- The defendant was aware that the accident resulted in property damage, serious bodily injury, or death.
- The defendant willfully and deliberately failed in their duty to stop and remain at the accident scene.
- The defendant willfully and deliberately failed in stopping and helping someone who suffered serious bodily injury or death.
- The defendant was ordered to stop by an authorized law enforcement officer.
- The defendant was aware that they had been ordered to stop by an authorized law enforcement officer, yet they willfully and deliberately fled the scene.
- The maneuvers are undertaken by the defendant to flee and elude law enforcement officials resulted in the serious bodily injury or the death of another person.
If the prosecution is unable to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that all of the above elements are relevant to the defendant’s situation, their criminal defense attorney would likely be able to get the charges downgraded or dismissed.
If the charges were downgraded, the likely result would be reckless driving or regular, non-aggravated fleeing to elude an authorized law enforcement officer.
For a free legal consultation with a aggravated fleeing to elude lawyer serving Tampa, call 941-444-4444
The Consequences of an Aggravated Case of Fleeing and Eluding a Law Enforcement Officer
A conviction for this charge which did not involve any actual serious bodily injury or death is likely to result in a second-degree felony.
The penalties for a second-degree felony, in this case, could include:
- A sentence of up to fifteen years in prison.
- Up to $10,000 in fines.
- The possibility of vehicle forfeiture.
- The revocation of your driving license for a period of between one and five years.
- A permanent criminal record.
However, this second-degree felony charge is not the worst possible consequence. If it is determined that you showed a wanton disregard for other people and their property, or were involved in serious bodily injury, or caused a death, you could face a first-degree felony.
The penalties of a first-degree felony, in this case, could include:
- A sentence of up to thirty years in prison. The minimum mandatory sentence would be three years.
- Fines up to $10,000, vehicle forfeiture, a revoked driver’s license, and a criminal record showing your first-degree felony forever.
However, if your criminal defense attorney is successful at getting your charges downgraded to a regular flee and elude charge, you will only be facing a third-degree felony.
A third-degree felony for attempting to flee and elude a law enforcement officer without aggravation can result in:
- A sentence of up to five years of imprisonment.
- Five years spent under probation.
- A fine of up to $5,000.
- Suspension of driver’s license for one year minimum and five years maximum.
- A permanent criminal record.
It is not impossible for your criminal defense attorney to get your fleeing to elude charges dropped entirely. This would mean no possibility of a third-degree felony, second-degree felony, or first-degree felony at all.
Tampa Aggravated Fleeing to Elude Lawyer Near Me 941-444-4444
How Can an Attorney Defend You Against Charges of Fleeing and Eluding a Law Enforcement Officer?
If you have been charged with the intention to flee and elude a law enforcement officer, this does not mean you will necessarily be charged for it.
A criminal defense attorney from The Law Place will be able to fight to have the felony charges against you dropped or dismissed. However, we will base your personal defense against the specific circumstances surrounding your arrest. The following are some common defenses that we have successfully used in the past:
- The defendant did not have the intention to flee and elude a law enforcement officer.
- The defendant was unaware of any property damage, injury, or death.
- The defendant failed to see the law enforcement officer and, therefore, did not know they were being pulled over.
- The defendant was afraid to pull over as it was night, and they were looking for a safe opportunity to stop for the law enforcement officer.
Additional requirements dictate whether or not the police officer was considered an authorized law enforcement officer with the power to make you stop your vehicle.
An authorized law enforcement officer must drive an official patrol vehicle with all of the official jurisdictional marks displayed clearly, including their agency insignia. They must also use their vehicle’s sirens and have been wearing full and official police uniform.
When Is the Right Point to Seek Legal Representation?
Criminal defense representation is not free. Therefore, with the financial stresses involved with the threat of extensive fines and disruption to your usual ability to drive, you may put off seeking legal representation.
However, this is not wise. If you did not have legal representation beforehand, you should seek it immediately after you have been put under arrest for fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer. You should also seek representation if you have reason to believe you are being investigated for fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer.
This is because of the seriousness of the potential charges against you. Without representation, you are more than likely to receive a second-degree or first-degree felony charge. However, this may be reduced to a third-degree felony with an attorney by your side or dropped entirely. The more time you give your attorney to investigate and prepare your case, the better your chances are.
Additionally, without an attorney’s guidance, it is extremely easy to accidentally implicate yourself, which could be held against you in a trial. If you do not have legal representation, it is vital to ensure you remember your constitutional right to remain silent!
Officers of the law are not only allowed but encouraged to interact with suspects in a deceptive and dishonest manner. They could lie to you about the existence of evidence against you to trick you into admitting guilt. This makes their job simpler and easier. It is not uncommon for a suspect to admit guilt because they feel they have no other remaining options. This is never the case!
If you would like the support of an attorney who is well-versed in Florida’s traffic and criminal laws, look no further than The Law Place in Tampa. We will fight tooth and nail to achieve the lowest sentence possible for your fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer case.
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How Much Will a Fleeing to Elude Attorney From The Law Place Cost Me?
If you have been charged with fleeing from the law following a car accident, the repercussions of a guilty-verdict are likely to cost you much more than the cost of legal representation in the long-run.
We cannot state how much your specific representation will cost you here as each individual client has a different set of circumstances, which may increase or decrease the cost of representation. But, we can make you one simple promise.
The Law Place operates on the basis of complete transparency in terms of legal costs. Following your free consultation, once we have learned the details of your charges and the circumstances that surround them, we will be able to tell you exactly how much representation will cost you. We can also work together to formulate a payment plan that works for you.
Here at The Law Place, we pride ourselves on fairness and will ensure that your quoted price is accurate with no hidden costs. Phone the number at the end of this article now for details on how we can help you with your fleeing to elude charges.
Contact The Law Place Today
If you have been charged with fleeing to elude a law enforcement official, it is vital that you seek legal representation as soon as possible. Fleeing to elude, especially in its aggravated form, is punished severely. You could be looking at a second or first-degree felony. However, with the help of The Law Place, you may be able to get your charges reduced to a third-degree charge or even dismissed entirely.
The Law Place in Tampa has a proven history of helping our clients to minimize the damage of their fleeing to elude charges. We have a team with 75 years of combined law experience. Also, unlike other law firms, we operate every case as a team. This means that you will benefit from the pooled resources, wisdom, and experience of every attorney under our employment. So, you will be given the very best opportunity to beat your fleeing to elude charges.
If you have been charged with fleeing to elude, don’t waste time. Get in touch with The Law Place today for a free consultation. We can offer you free legal advice at no obligation, and the entire call will be protected by attorney-client privileges, even though it cost you nothing. This is the best way to get out in front of your fleeing to elude charges. We can give you a good idea of what to expect, how we can help you, and we can begin to ease your anxieties.
If you have been charged with fleeing to elude, contact us today at (941) 444-4444.