In Venice and the entire State of Florida, feeling to elude a law enforcement officer carries heavy penalties. These consequences get considerably more serious if you have risked the serious bodily injury or death of others. Displaying a wanton disregard for the safety of those around you at the scene of your crime by attempting to leave puts you in danger of being charged for aggravated fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer.
Many Americans have a dramatized idea of fleeing to elude, usually involving a high-speed car chase. But, you may be surprised to know that arrests can be made in much simpler circumstances. No matter how slow you are driving, a law enforcement officer can charge you with fleeing to elude if you fail to stop when instructed. In such a case, the mandatory minimum sentence you could face would be a third-degree felony charge, as per Florida Statute 775.083. A conviction means that you will become a felon and, as such, will have a criminal record without the possibility of it being sealed or expunged. This will stay with you forever, even if you move outside the State of Florida.
That being said, there is hope! At The Law Place, we have a skilled team of criminal defense attorneys who have a combined experience of over 75 years. Your case is not the first of its kind that our attorneys have successfully fought. If you are facing charges of feeling to elude a law enforcement officer, then contact us today for a free consultation and credible, impartial legal advice.
Our lineS are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so call The Law Place now at (941) 444-4444.
What Are the Parameters of Fleeing to Elude Laws in Venice, Florida
Florida Statute 316.1935 outlines the laws regarding fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer in Venice, Florida. However, this statute stipulates that a legal conviction can only be secured if the burden of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt. In order the attain this, the prosecution must prove the following:
- The accused was driving a vehicle on a public road in the State of Florida.
- The accused willingly and deliberately failed to comply with the order to stop issued by a law enforcement officer.
- The accused purposefully fled from the officer, either using a vehicle or by foot.
- The accused initially stopped their vehicle but later deliberately fled the scene in order to elude a law enforcement officer.
Fortunately, the details of this statute leave plenty of space for an experienced attorney to build a strong defense for your case. Furthermore, the arresting officer who apprehended you would have had a duty to fulfill several requirements throughout the arrest. In the event that your attorney finds evidence that any of these requirements were not met, the charges against you would be invalidated.
The patrol car in which your arresting officer was driving must have been official, clearly displaying all jurisdictional markings and their agency insignia. Furthermore, the police lights and sirens must have been activated before you were pulled over. Lastly, all officers present should have been wearing full, official police uniforms.
What Are the Penalties for Attempting to Flee and Elude a Police Officer in Venice, Florida?
Whilst an experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to build you a strong defense and ultimately help to reduce your sentence, it is important to consider a worst-case scenario. In the event that your defense is unsuccessful, the penalties for fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer in Florida can be extremely serious. The consequences for felony charges are lifelong and often life-altering.
If you are facing a non-aggravated fleeing to elude charge, the results may be:
- Imprisonment for a period of up to five years.
- A probation period of up to five years.
- A fine of up to $5,000.
- A suspended license for a period of one year, minimum.
- A criminal record that displays your conviction of fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer.
Unfortunately, even the most highly-skilled criminal defense attorney has no power to help expunge or seal a third-degree felony charge. Once it is on your criminal record, it there for life, and the law makes no exceptions in this case. This means that any potential future employers will be able to access this information, jeopardizing your chances of successfully securing employment or requesting a competitive rate of pay. Sadly, you will also be forced to pay a raised insurance premium for any future car that you buy.
We know that these facts are daunting and may make you worry about your future. This is why we strongly recommend hiring an experienced criminal defense lawyer so that you have the best possible chance at having your charges dropped or reduced. The Law Place has a team that is willing to fight on your behalf so that your life can get back on track. Contact us today for a free consultation and the advice you need to start building your case.
What Are the Penalties for Aggravated Fleeing to Elude a Law Enforcement Officer in Venice, Florida?
The consequences of fleeing to elude can be worsened in the event that the charge is aggravated. For example, if the defendant drove recklessly and the lives of others were endangered, this could result in an aggravated fleeing to elude charge. The punishment for such a charge could be elevated to either a second-degree and first-degree felony.
It is important to note that you do not have to physically inflict serious bodily injury or death to be charged with aggravated fleeing to elude. The charge can be made to anyone whose arrest included reckless driving that put the safety of others at risk.
If you are facing a second-degree felony charge, meaning you have not actually inflicted serious bodily injury or death, then you may be looking at:
- A prison sentence of up to 15 years.
- 15 years of probation in addition to your imprisonment.
- A fine of up to $10,000.
- A license suspension for a period of between 1 year, minimum, and 5 years, maximum.
- A criminal record that shows your conviction for aggravated fleeing to elude for the rest of your life.
If your recklessness behind the wheel of a vehicle did, in fact, cause serious bodily injury or death, then you may be facing a first-degree felony charge, and therefore, more serious consequences, such as:
- A prison sentence of up to 30 years, with a 3 year mandatory minimum.
- 30 years of probation after your release.
- A fine of up to $10,000.
- A suspended license for between 1 and 5 years.
- A criminal record displaying a first-degree felony charge.
If you are facing either a first or second-degree felony charge for aggravated fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer, then you will need the representation of a reputable criminal defense attorney. Our lawyers at The Law Place offer free case evaluations so that you can get high-quality legal advice, no-strings-attached. Call us today to speak with a member of our team and find out exactly how we can help you.
What Are Some Defence for Feeling to Elude Charges in Venice, Florida?
Fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer is a serious charge and can have severe consequences if the accused is found guilty. However, there is still hope, and the help of an experienced lawyer will make sure that you have the strongest chance of success with your case. There are a number of defenses that your attorney may choose to use when representing you. The following is a list of commonly adopted defenses in fleeing to elude defense cases. However, it is important to remember that your defense will be tailored to your specific case.
- It was not clearly communicated by law enforcement officer that the accused needed to stop their vehicle.
- The accused had no intention of fleeing to elude.
- The accused did not ‘deliberately and wilfully’ elude the law enforcement officer. In some situations, the accused may have been unable to stop the vehicle. For example, it may have been unsafe to do so.
- The required criteria that a police officer must meet when issuing a stop was not fulfilled. This may be because they were driving the wrong vehicle or not wearing their uniform.
- The police officer did not use their vehicle lights and sirens when pulling over the accused.
- The accused did not feel safe enough to pull over their vehicle and was waiting to do so as soon as they felt secure, possibly due to the area.
- In the case of aggravated fleeing to elude charges, your attorney may be able to prove that you were not aware of any damage to either people or property.
As we have already mentioned, your lawyer may employ one or more of these defenses and alter it to fit your case, or they may use a different one entirely. One good way of reducing your sentence is to prove that the arresting police offer did not properly follow protocol. If successful, the defense may see your charge reduced to a second-degree misdemeanor, which will lessen the severity of your punishment.
The stakes are high when you risk receiving a lifelong criminal record. Contact The Law Place in Venice, FL., today so that you can talk to an experienced attorney about your options and make sure that you have the best team possible representing you, with the skills you need for a strong defense.
The Burden of Proof in Florida Explained
In all criminal cases, the prosecution must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Therefore, if the evidence presented against you is not 100% concrete, the judge and jury are legally obliged to find you not guilty. Your lawyer is charged with the task of exposing the flaws in the prosecution’s evidence in order to show reasonable doubt.
Can I Keep My Driver’s License After a Florida Fleeing to Elude Charge?
License suspension is a difficult part of being charged with fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer. Most people in Florida rely on their vehicles to travel to and from work, look after children, buy groceries, etc. Plus, in a medical emergency, you would have to pay the cost of an ambulance without a personal vehicle. With the representation of a skilled lawyer, you may able to secure some limited driving allowances. You have two options:
- You can file a hardship license application with the Bureau of Administrative Review, through which you may get a hearing. If this is successful, you will be issued with a hardship license that will allow you to use your vehicle for essential purposes only. This will come with a fee and may not be available for those charged with severe offenses.
- Or, if you can function without a vehicle throughout your revocation period, you can pay for a license reinstatement afterward.
The Law Place
Facing charges of fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer is a terrifying reality for a lot of drivers in Venice, Florida. However, with the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney, you have the chance to get those charges reduced or thrown out altogether.
At The Law Place, our team offers impartial and confidential advice through our free consultation service. We pride ourselves on representing our clients with strong defenses, so call us today to discuss the options you have and make the first step to getting your life back on track.
Our lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so that help is always only one phone call away. Contact us today at (941) 444-4444. We are waiting for your call.