stand your ground street sign

Florida's Stand Your Ground law may be a possible defense in an assault case. This statute states that "a person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity, and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be, has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force." If a person's situation qualifies under this statute, they may be exempt from criminal charges or civil action. Consulting with our experienced assault lawyer can help protect your rights and determine if this criminal defense can be used in your case.

Stand Your Ground in an Assault Defense

If you are charged with assault and were acting in self defense, you may be able to use the Stand Your Ground law as your defense. The Stand Your Ground law requires that evidence be provided that shows proof that you acted in self defense. An experienced assault lawyer can help with your assault case by investigating the events that led up to the time of your arrest and providing a defense for your case.

The Stand Your Ground defense may be used in cases where there is a forcible felony. In Florida, a forcible felony is one where a person uses threatening physical force or violence against another person with the intent to do harm, such as in a kidnapping, carjacking, or robbery. Using deadly force may be seen as a way to prevent this type of felony, and the Stand Your Ground defense may apply.

To be considered for the Stand Your Ground defense, you must be able to prove:

  • You were in a place you had a right to be and were not trespassing or committing another crime.
  • You had a reasonable fear of death or harm and felt that you were in danger and acted upon that fear.

In certain situations, the Stand Your Ground defense does not apply. These include:

  • When force is used against law enforcement entering a space where they are conducting business
  • Using deadly force in an unreasonable manner when it is not required

When deadly force is used under these circumstances, the charge may be considered murder.

Convicted of Assault in Florida

In Florida, assault is considered an intentional and unlawful threat with word or force with the intent to do violence against another person, and there is a fear from the other person that the violence is forthcoming. The attack does not need to be carried out to be considered assault as long as the threat is imminent.

An assault conviction can affect the rest of your life. The charge will be part of your criminal record and will be permanent. It can have negative effects on all aspects of your life, such as your job, education, housing, and more. If you are convicted of assault, you could face the following charges:

  • Simple assault. A simple assault conviction is considered a second-degree misdemeanor. With a conviction of simple assault, you could face up to 60 days in jail, six months of probation, and/or a fine of up to $500.
  • Aggravated assault. Aggravated assault is considered a third-degree felony and can be either assault with a deadly weapon or an assault with the intent of committing another felony. With a conviction of aggravated assault, you face up to five years in jail, five years of probation, and/or a fine of $5,000. If the aggravated assault is with a firearm, there is a mandatory three-year jail sentence.

Contact an Experienced Florida Assault Lawyer

If you are under investigation or have been arrested and are facing charges of assault in Florida, you need an experienced assault lawyer to help with your case. To set up a free consultation with The Law Offices of David Malove, contact us online or by calling our office at 954-861-0384. Payment plans are available.