Three Strikes Law for Florida Felonies

The Three Strikes Law has intense consequences for people who may not even deserve it. If you are considered a “repeat felon,” you deserve the same due process protections and criminal justice rights. Because it can include a variety of qualifying conviction degrees, any misdemeanor or felony that is applicable under the law should be guided through the legal process by an attorney who knows how to navigate the Three Strikes Law.

We know that a strike may be given wrongly or falsely and does not automatically mean that you are deserving of it. If you are convicted of committing a third strike of any related offense or felony, immediately contact a highly-skilled attorney, such as any of the successful, qualified Tampa federal defense lawyers from The Rickman Law Firm to receive the proper legal navigation to help you achieve the most favorable outcome.

What Is the Three Strikes Law?

The Three Strikes Law is a piece of Florida legislature meant to target those who are considered habitual criminal offenders or repeat criminals. Defined in Fla. Stat. § 775.087, the Three Strikes Law may face an extended time in prison if the defendant has already been convicted of two or more felonies or other qualified offenses in Florida. The intention is to prevent “career criminals” from repeatedly committing felonies.

The Three Strikes Law is applied very seriously in court. Sometimes, it is applied to cases wrongly and serves as the basis for unjust punishment.

What Criminal Offenses and Felonies Are Included in the Three Strikes Law?

The felonies and qualifying offense convictions that are outlined in the Three Strikes Law include:

  • Arson
  • Sexual battery
  • Robbery
  • Kidnapping
  • Aggravated child abuse
  • Aggravated abuse of an elderly person or disabled adult
  • Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon
  • Murder
  • Manslaughter
  • Aggravated manslaughter of an elderly person or disabled adult
  • Aggravated manslaughter of a child
  • Unlawful throwing, placing, or discharging of a destructive device or bomb
  • Armed burglary
  • Aggravated battery
  • Aggravated stalking
  • Carjacking

Each of these offenses is considered a strike and will result in increasing sentencing under the Three Strike Law. Additionally, each of these felonies or qualifying offenses involving the use, or attempted use, of a firearm or destructive device will receive increased penalties.

These sentences will be added to the mandatory minimum sentencing for the attempt or execution of any of the aforementioned convictions. Your Tampa federal defense attorney will have an understanding of the severity of your sentence potential that they should communicate clearly with you while working on your defense case.

How the Three Strikes Law Works in Florida

In Florida, the Three Strikes Law is also referred to as the “10-20-Life” law, referring to the levels of minimum imprisonment sentences with each aggregated “strike” committed, where convictions must receive an additional sentence minimum of a ten-year sentence, a twenty-year sentence, and from a twenty-five-year sentence up to a life sentence as the judge sees fit.

According to the Florida state legislature

  • A first-degree felony sentence, as a third strike, can result in an imprisonment sentence ranging from 30 years up to life. Additionally, there can be mandatory fines of up to $10,000
  • A second-degree felony sentence, as a third strike, can result in an imprisonment sentence of up to 20 years. Additionally, there can be mandatory fines of up to $10,000
  • A third-degree felony sentence, as a third strike, can result in an imprisonment sentence of up to 10 years. Additionally, there can be mandatory fines of up to $5,000

What Do I Do On My Third Strike?

It is imperative that you seek out expert legal assistance for any crime that you are charged with. If you are charged with a third strike under the Three Strikes Law, you could potentially be facing lengthened sentences and a harsher sentence, even if you would have been granted any degree of leniency in your sentencing were this not a third strike. Being sentenced to a third strike can be extremely frightening.

If you are on your third strike, working with your attorney can bring out some findings that will help your case. In exploring your previous cases, your attorney may find that your rights were violated or infringed upon. These findings, along with a strong criminal defense case on your behalf, could result in a better outcome for you. Working with an expert Tampa federal defense attorney can help you avoid a life sentence in court, and may help to lessen the degree of the criminal charge, lessen the fines and sentencing terms, or even get your charge dropped.

Get the Protection That You Deserve When Facing the Three Strikes Law

The Three Strikes law can severely and negatively impact your life without the proper guidance or assistance, often proving disastrous for you, even if it is undeserving. If you are facing a third-strike felony charge, it is extremely important that you schedule your consultation with an attorney. Charges of a third strike in Florida are held extremely seriously in court. You deserve legal representation throughout the trial process that is effective, high-quality, and backed by years of successful experience. Contact The Rickman Law Firm for a Tampa federal defense attorney who will aggressively and meticulously thoroughly fight for your justice and rights.

The Rickman Law Firm has been serving greater Tampa Bay for over 10 fulfilling years. We have built a reputation for delivering top-notch legal services both inside and outside of the courtroom. Our office is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your convenience and justice. Contact us today at 813-999-0502 or fill out our consultation form for one of our attorneys to reach out to you soon. 

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

Is There A Law Against Sexting in Florida?

While sexting is a relatively new legal consideration, there can still be relatively severe consequences for charges including minors or the unconsented distribution of sexually-explicit or pornographic material publicly. The Rickman Law Firm’s diligent and experienced Tampa criminal attorneys are successfully skilled and knowledgeable concerning the laws surrounding sexting.

What Is Considered Sexting in Florida?

In layman’s terms, sexting is defined as the electronic transfer of sexually explicit messages, photographs, or videos. When occurring between two adults, there are no legal implications so long as the messages remain private and undistributed publicly. However, when at least one of the parties is a minor, there are major legal implications that could lead to an investigation, fines, trial, or even an arrest. 

The primary issue concerning sexting in a court of law is that of consent. There may not always be a degree of consent between two adults during a sexting interaction, and there is never a degree of consent where a minor is involved in any form of sexting. In some cases, sexually explicit texts, photos, and videos are sent without the owner’s consent.

What Is Considered a Sexting Crime?

The state of Florida has varying degrees of definition for what constitutes sexting and the related legal implications, including misdemeanor or felony charges, fines, and even time in jail or prison.

Sexting between adults is legal in Florida. It is important to understand that a lack of consent via  the sharing of sexually-explicit material could result in legal action if the prosecution party seeks it out. Florida Statute § 784.049 et seq. declares the willful and malicious sexual cyber harassment via sharing explicit photos online a first-degree misdemeanor. 

When sexting occurs between a minor and an adult, the charge is elevated from a sexting charge to child pornography. If mistaken sexting between an adult and a minor, where the minor’s age was unbeknownst to the adult, a highly-skilled, experienced criminal attorney from Tampa’s The Rickman Law Firm could help fight this charge.

Sexting occurrences between two minors is also a criminal offense, as minors are not able to give legal consent. Due to the nature of the long-term consequences of sexting as a minor, the punishment could include 8 hours of community service, payment of a $60 civil penalty, or participation in a cyber-safety program, or any combination thereof.

Sexting Charge Criminal Defense Lawyers in Tampa

Due to the tricky and novel nature of sexting laws in the Florida court, it is important to familiarize yourself with the law. The defense lawyers at our Tampa office will offer free consultation and legal advice if you find yourself in need. Our law firm is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for you. For your free consultation, or to get in contact with one of our attorneys, fill out our consultation form or call The Rickman Law Firm at 813-999-0502.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

What to Do if You Are Being Investigated for a Sex Crime in Tampa, FL

Sex crime investigations are lengthy and complex, with harsh consequences and societal implications for any person accused. If you have been wrongly accused and are being investigated for a sex crime in Tampa, you need to be informed of what may occur from the investigation process and how to conduct yourself. 

Due to the nature of the charge, the person accused will suffer lifelong consequences. Many times, allegations of a sexual offense or misconduct are fabricated or exaggerated. Having sex crime allegations will immediately place an intense stigma on the accused. To prevent your life from coming to a standstill because of wrongful accusations, immediately hiring an expert, skilled criminal defense attorney in Tampa will allow you the highest chance of dealing with wrongful allegations successfully.

Types of Sex Crimes

There are multiple types of sex crimes that could be investigated in Florida. These crimes are usually tried as felonies and will result in placement on the sex offender registry. They include:

What Do I Do If I Am Being Investigated for a Sex Crime?

If you are being wrongly investigated for a sex crime, the primary thing to ensure is that you are seeking early intervention. By immediately seeking legal counsel from a distinguished sex crime defense attorney in Tampa, you are actively protecting yourself and improving your chances of obtaining a dismissal or avoiding charges. 

When investigating a sex crime, the police may investigate you for an extended period of time without your knowledge. When you find out that you are being investigated, the most important thing to remember is to not call the police or contact the victim. Anything you say or do, even when attempting to clear your name, can and will be used against you in a court of law. If you are asked to meet for questioning by an officer or investigative detective, inform them that you will answer after speaking with your sex crime attorney.

What Can I Expect During a Sex Crime Investigation?

You can expect your sex crime investigation to last for months, at the very least. The process is lengthy, with charging, investigating, and court system progression each taking, at least, a few weeks to occur. Being aware of how these lengthy, complex investigations occur and are conducted will better equip you in the case that you are being investigated based on sex crime allegations. In addition, quickly seeking out a criminal defense attorney for your Tampa will allow your case to be better positioned effectively for your justice. Here is a list of what can be expected during this process:

  1. There will be a police report filed. This will either be by the plaintiff, someone who suspects that sexual criminal conduct, or even a police sting.
  2. The preliminary investigation will take place. Typically, the alleged victim will be contacted, as well as any possible witnesses. The investigator will begin to gather their evidence and will look closely into your background
  3. The  police will attempt to gather information through thorough interviews with the alleged victim and any relevant witnesses
  4. The police may try to sneakily engage you through the methods of posing as children to attempt to lure the defendant to engage with them, especially online, posting online ads with made-up children being offered sexually, posing as someone who wants to obtain pornographic material from you, or securing warrants to tap your phone lines and investigate your electronics
  5. The investigating officer will then contact you. This usually occurs when there is a belief of solid preliminary evidence of your alleged sex crime offense. Whether the officer asks to meet with you at home or have you come into the police station, you should never agree to anything before consulting with your attorney, ensuring that you give your attorney the officer’s name and contact information.
  6. The investigation will continue, and if the investigative officer, or the prosecution, believes that there is enough gathered evidence, you will either be arrested and charged for your alleged offense, or the prosecution could seek an indictment. 
  7. There may be a grand jury that is sought out to listen to the gathered evidence or a filed complaint alongside the gathered evidence, and the prosecution may even indict you for a felony sex offense charge. During this time, your Tampa criminal defense attorney will have been working diligently to gather evidence supporting your innocence. 
  8. If your case gets to court, following your arrest, you will be brought in for your first appearance. You will be informed of the charges against you, as well as the conditions for your release, and your attorney will be there to negotiate on your behalf.

Our sex crimes defense team will guide you through the process, protecting you and your rights with each step. Lead Attorney Anthony Rickman is aggressive and diligent in fighting your charge and the accusation against you before you ever step foot in a courtroom. Many times, he can get the state to drop the charges and accusations against you before they even get to court.

The Rickman Law Firm Will Fight for You

Rickman Law Firm has the experience, skill, and aggressive defense that you need for your case. Our law firm is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For your free consultation with a sex crime defense attorney in Tampa, fill out our consultation form or call The Rickman Law Firm any time at 813-999-0502.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

Can I Fight Charges of Prostitution in Florida?

In the Florida legal system, prostitution is considered a serious crime. Accordingly, prostitution charges can carry heavy consequences if not prevented or fought against effectively. In addition to sentences including, but not limited to, heavy fines, a permanent criminal record, and imprisonment, there is the possibility of the lifelong addition of your information on the national sex offender registry.

The experience of being charged with prostitution is overwhelming and very complex, especially because sex crimes are taken very seriously in the criminal justice system. However, you still have a right to representation in court, and with the right help with your case defense from a Tampa federal criminal defense attorney, you could strengthen your innocence and lessen or even have your prostitution charge dropped.

Understanding a Prostitution Charge

Prostitution is considered a felony in Florida. According to the 2018 Florida statute, prostitution is defined as the “giving or receiving of the body for sexual activity for hire but excluding sexual activity between spouses.” In addition, there are multiple charges in the legislature that could fall under the term of prostitution, including:

  • Owning, establishing, maintaining, or operating any place for the purpose of prostitution
  • Offering or agreeing to secure someone for the purpose of prostitution
  • Receiving or agreeing to receive any person into any place, structure, building, or conveyance for the purpose of prostitution, including permitting any person to remain there for such purpose
  • Directing, taking, transporting, or offering to agree to direct, take, or transport any place, structure, or building, or to any other person, with the knowledge or reasonable cause to believe that the purpose of such directing, taking, or transporting is prostitution, lewdness, or assignation
  • For a person 18 years of age or older to offer to commit, or to commit, or to engage in, prostitution, lewdness, or assignation
  • Soliciting, inducing, enticing, or procuring someone to commit prostitution
  • Residing in, entering, or remaining in any place, structure, or building, or entering or remaining in any conveyance, for the purpose of prostitution
  • Aiding or participating in any of the aforementioned
  • Purchasing the services of any person engaged in prostitution

There are many various actions and accusations that could lead to a prostitution charge. However, even though the prospect of a prostitution charge is intense and could result in dire consequences when not properly dealt with, the truth is that you can fight charges of prostitution in Florida.

Hiring a Federal Defense Attorney

You have the right to present a defense in court. To help achieve the most favorable outcome for your prostitution charge, the most effective strategy is hiring a knowledgeable and aggressive expert federal defense attorney. Prostitution charges have major implications, both inside and outside the legal system. Consulting and hiring one of the skilled attorneys at The Rickman Law Firm will offer you the insight to be able to navigate the stress of the criminal trial process. With a reputable consult, there is a better chance of reducing fines or sentence, or even your charges being dropped.

The right Tampa federal defense attorney can be the crucial ally needed to improve your chances of a dropped charge, lessened fine, or a dropped case. You should be confident in the attorney that you hire. They should have successful experience in a trial defending charges and cases that are relevant to yours. The attorney that you hire should be highly skilled, with a library of applicable knowledge to devote to defending and fighting for your justice.

Gather Evidence Supporting Your Claim

Once hired, your Tampa federal criminal defense attorney will begin dissecting the case built against you by the prosecution. They will consider the investigation that has been conducted against you and begin conducting their own. This investigation could include interviewing relevant informants, gathering their evidence to support your claim or dispute the prosecution’s, reviewing police reports and investigative records, as well as discovering and reviewing other relative documents and statements. In addition, they will take considerable care to examine each piece of evidence that the prosecution has gathered and reported with the primary reason being to find any weaknesses in the prosecution’s case. These weaknesses could possibly include inconsistencies or flaws in the witness statements or tampering with the evidence gathered. This meticulously conducted aspect of the investigation can end up in the production and discovery of strong evidence that could lead to a result of either dismissing your case or drastically reducing your charge. 

Another way to help mitigate your charge of prostitution is to work on strengthening your defense. This can be achieved through thoroughly taking the time to gather any pieces of evidence of your own that could be used to support your justice in the case. Some examples of these pieces of evidence could be personal statements and personal backgrounds from alibis, informants, and witnesses, any electronic evidence, such as surveillance footage and photographs, or expert reports and statements, including physical or mental examinations and testing results.

The Rickman Law Firm Fighting For You

The Rickman Law Firm’s attorneys are reputable and renowned for having expertise, successful defense strategies, and a wide array of relevant knowledge. Position yourself toward a favorable outcome in your fight against a prostitution charge wit         

Our firm is always open for you to receive expert legal counsel or to hire an aggressive attorney to fight for your rights during the criminal trial process. For a free consultation, call the Rickman Law Firm any time at 813-999-0502 or fill out our online consultation form.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

How To Protect Yourself Against Rape Charges in Florida

Rape is a seriously and harshly punished crime in Florida. There are life-long implications and repercussions for the reputations of those accused. When you are falsely accused of rape charges, you need to act immediately to avoid as many negative undeserved consequences as possible. 

The Rickman Law Firm’s Tampa criminal defense lawyers are highly skilled and experienced in rape charge cases and can help protect you and your reputation. With extensive knowledge of the Florida criminal justice system, the attorneys at The Rickman Law Firm are well-equipped with the tools, strategies, and resources to provide you with the highest-quality legal counsel and representation throughout your case.

What is Considered Rape in Florida?

In Florida, rape is defined as the offense of coerced sexual acts including oral, anal, or female genital penetration with the sexual organ or any other object forced on a non-consenting individual, and it is considered a felony. In Florida, statutory rape is when the unconsenting party is a minor and is also considered a felony. In situations where both parties are minors, and one individual is considered unable to provide consent, statutory rape is charged.

In a rape charge investigation, consent is the considered the primary factor. In the Florida court of law, minors can never give legal consent for sex, and if there is no consent from the adult who did experience sexual battery, then it is also defined as rape. In addition, any degree of intoxication, whether via drugs, alcohol consumption, or forced drug consumption, that mental incapacitation during sexual battery is also considered rape.

What Are the Potential Consequences of a Rape Charge?

A conviction for sexual battery could result in incarceration and a lifelong registration on the national sex offender listing. However, there are varying degrees and consequences of rape conviction based on the circumstances of the incident, the allegations against the defense, and the evidence that is gathered by the prosecution. Your Tampa criminal defense attorney will inform you of the degree of your charge. All charges of sexual battery in Florida are punished as felonies to differing degrees. 

A life felony charge case, among fines, includes:

  • Sexual battery of someone under 12, 
  • Forcible sexual battery
  • Sexual battery from someone older than 18 against someone younger than 12

First-degree felony rape charges, with consequences of high fines and sentences of up to 30 years, include:

  • Sexual battery from the defense, older than 18, against the prosecutor, who is older than 12
  • Sexual battery from the defense, younger than 18, against the prosecutor, older than 12

Second-degree felony rape charges, where the offender receives a sentence of up to 5 years among fines, include:

  • Sexual battery where the defense does not use physical force or violence likely to cause serious personal injury

While the specific consequences of different rape charges varies, each charge is serious and can carry highly consequential implications. Even a rape charge is enough to cause irreparable damage in your life. It is important to understand the type of charge that you are being accused of, as well as the legal severity of it.

What to Do When Facing a Rape Charge

When being charged with accusations of rape, you will most likely suffer dire consequences outside of the court of law. There are many occasions in which allegations of sexual batter and rape are fabricated and exaggerated at the entirely unfair suffering of the defendant. When facing an unjust rape charge, action needs to be taken immediately. The first step to take is hiring a Tampa criminal defense attorney who has successful experience in defending rape charge cases. The Rickman Law Firm prides itself on aggressive, diligent, and successful legal experts who will fight for your justice.

Your attorney will begin reviewing the case and charge to start building a strong defense. Some factors that may be considered include arguing consent, involuntary and intoxicated consent, false accusations, or constitutional protections, among others. Some case charges will be more difficult to argue than others, such as the accusation of sexual battery of a minor, where arguing consent is out of the question. An effective legal defense strategy will also be devised. With the right attorney, you might get your charge dropped, fines lessened, or even your case dismissed.

Consult the Experts in Sex Crime Defense at The Rickman Law Firm

Rape cases are among the most difficult and lengthy in Florida. Having an experienced legal expert guiding you through the process and protecting your rights and justice is the best decision to help position you and your case as well as possible during your rape case. If you have been falsely accused of a sexual battery crime that you did not do, contact our aggressive attorneys today. A false sexual battery charge could lead to the loss of your reputation, freedom, and livelihood. Our law firm is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help fight for your rights.

For your free consultation with a criminal defense lawyer in Tampa, fill out our consultation form or call The Rickman Law Firm any time today at 813-999-0502.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

How Florida Prosecutors Gather Evidence for Sex Crimes Cases

If you have been charged with a sex crime in Tampa, you have rights during the investigative process and judicial trial. Facing allegations of rape, sexual battery, or any other sex crime case is a lengthy, complex process that should not be endured alone. As the best criminal defense law firm in Tampa, The Rickman Law Firm’s aggressive, experienced, and highly knowledgeable attorneys are reputable and will guide and protect you during the course of the judicial proceedings. It is vital that you understand each step of the investigation and what types of evidence could be sought out and gathered by the accusing party. Find more information on how Florida prosecutors gather evidence for sex crimes cases.

When Does the Evidence Gathering Process Begin?

As soon as a report is filed against you, the investigation process will begin. While you may not be aware that there is an investigation being conducted against you, especially for an extended period, the first process is usually without any contact with the accused. During this period, investigators will conduct interviews and collect recounts from relative parties. This investigation may also include securing warrants for tapping your phone lines or recording your electronic devices.

Once you become aware that you are being investigated, you should not call the police or contact the victim on your own and immediately find a highly reputable, experienced federal criminal defense lawyer in Tampa to help protect you during the process. When gathering evidence, prosecutors and investigators can and will use anything that you say or do in court. You may be contacted by the investigating officer to meet for questioning once the preliminary investigation is finished but do not agree to anything without thoroughly consulting with your attorney.

Types of Evidence That Could Be Gathered

Sex crime accusations and charges are extremely serious and consequential, both inside and outside the court of law. When facing allegations, hiring an attorney from The Rickman Law Firm, the best criminal defense law firm in Tampa, will offer you the expertise to understand the implications of any evidence found, gathered, or seized within the criminal trial process. The representation needed to promote and prove your innocence cannot be attained on your own, and hiring a legal expert who is highly reputable within the court system will heighten your chances of lessened fines or even a dropped case.

One of the most important aspects of the evidence-gathering process of a sex crime case is that the prosecuting party will have to disclose the evidence that has been gathered for the defense to inspect, test, and record within 15 days of filing the Notice of Discovery. This can prove beneficial to your case in that you and your attorney can take an aggressive approach in promoting your innocence to persuade the prosecution to not file any charges against you or for a jury to acquit you.

Some of the evidence that could be gathered and reported, whether in the 15 days or during the entirety of the lengthy investigative process includes, but is not limited to:

  • Personal background from witnesses, alibis, and informants, including all persons known to the prosecutor that could have any relevant information to the charged offense allegation
  • Personal statements from witnesses, alibis, and informants, including all persons known to the prosecutor that could have any relevant information to the charged offense allegation
  • Personal statements, oral or recorded, from the defendant
  • Any materials and documents obtained from the defendant seized by the prosecution
  • Any evidence gathered via the means of electronic surveillance, including but not limited to wiretapping and electronic device recordings
  • Reports or statements made by experts regarding the accused crime, the defendant, or the prosecutor, including physical or mental examinations and any results of scientific tests or laboratory experiments
  • Any evidence of material that could be tested for DNA samples

The prosecution is required to include and explicitly disclose any gathered or known information, called exculpatory evidence, within the state’s possession or control that negates the guilt and promotes the innocence of the defendant. There could be a case dismissal with ample, solid exculpatory evidence.

Find A Diligent, Aggressive Attorney in Tampa to Fight For You

The Rickman Law Firm’s experienced and aggressive Tampa federal criminal defense lawyers are ready to fight for your innocence in your sex crime case. We will use our countless resources to find the right intricate details to fight for your justice. If you have been accused of a sex crime offense, it is vital that you contact an experienced attorney immediately. Our law firm is skilled and has great experience in State and Federal courts for sexually related crime accusations and trials.

For your free consultation with a sex crime defense attorney in Tampa, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, fill out our consultation form or call The Rickman Law Firm any time today at 813-999-0502.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

How Can I Limit the Impact of a Sex Crime Accusation on My Life?

Being accused of a sex crime can have a serious and lasting impact on your life. Even if you were falsely accused, the accusation itself can permanently damage your reputation, your relationships, and your career. However, even when accused so harshly, you are entitled to your rights in the legal system. It is imperative that you take immediate action to help protect yourself and limit the impact of a sex crime accusation on your life.

What Sex Crimes Charges Can Be Brought In Florida?

In Florida, a sex crime accusation could be for sexual assault and battery, child pornography, or any sexual act, conduct, or performance with a child, sex with a minor, also defined as statutory rape, prostitution and solicitations, or lascivious acts and indecent exposure of sexual organs. These crimes are considered far more harshly when a minor is directly involved.

Each of these sex crimes is taken very seriously in the legal process and could negatively impact your life without the proper strategy and guidance. The majority of these crimes are considered felonies and can come with the consequences of fines or imprisonment. In addition, it can result in a lifetime addition to the sex offender registry. Even an accusation is serious enough to severely damage your reputation, relationships, and career. Nevertheless, there are methods of limiting the impact of one of these accusations.

Maintain Your Privacy and Keep a Low Profile

The first step to take if you are accused of a sex crime is to avoid contact with the plaintiff. Anything that you say and do can and will be used against you during the investigation and, if relevant, trial. In the preliminary stages after a sex crime accusation, an investigative office will most likely reach out asking to speak with you attempting to elicit criminalizing information. However, you should not speak to the police without hiring and consulting your Tampa federal criminal defense lawyer first.

In immediately seeking legal counsel, you are taking steps to actively protect yourself and build a strengthened defense. The Rickman Law Firm’s highly-knowledgeable, highly skilled, and aggressive attorneys will fight for you and protect your rights.

Hire the Right Criminal Defense Lawyer

The next step is to hire an experienced attorney. When you are facing a sex crime accusation, it is vital to have the expertise and representation of someone who is highly familiar with the criminal justice legal process. They can offer insight and counsel regarding the implications of evidence already gathered. In addition, they will have the resources and knowledge to begin crafting an effective, aggressive strategy for your defense.


The attorney you hire should have relevant and successful experience in trial with your case. For example, if you are being accused of sexual battery, you must hire a Tampa sexual battery lawyer. You will have a better defense system, be able to promote your innocence, and either lessen or avoid the consequences with professional and expert representation. You do not have to attempt to navigate the legal process after a sex crime accusation by yourself, allow yourself to be passionately protected.

Gather Evidence To Support Your Defense

A clear way to help limit the impact of a sex crime accusation on your life is to immediately begin gathering evidence that could support your defense claim. You will be familiar with the reasons why you should be ruled innocent. With enough valid, exculpatory evidence supporting your claim, there is a chance that your case may be dismissed. Some of the potential evidence that could be gathered to support your innocence could be photographs or videos gathered from electronic surveillance, any material evidence that could be tested for DNA samples, reports or statements from informants, alibis, and witnesses. 

In addition, the prosecution is required to disclose the evidence that they have gathered for the defense to inspect, test, and record within 15 days of filing the Notice of Discovery of evidence. This is an important step in the legal process because it will allow you and your attorney to register and comprehend the gravity and implications of the evidence and your accusation. It will allow your defense team to materialize the strategy and next steps comparing the evidence that you have gathered versus the evidence that the prosecution has. Will you have to consider alternate options to limit the accusation’s impact? Will you be able to strongly support your case without seeking out alternatives?

Let Us Aggressively Fight For You To Reduce the Impact of a Sex Crime Accusation

You must be proactive in taking the necessary steps to limit the dire impact and consequences of a sex crime on your life. With The Rickman Law Firm, you can be assured that our attorneys will utilize every resource possible to fight for your rights, your justice, and your innocence. With over a decade of experience in successfully navigating complex and serious criminal defense charges, our Tampa federal criminal defense lawyers are ready to equip you with the tools, strategies, and confidence in your defense against your sex crime accusation.

Our law firm is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to provide you with the highest quality legal representation and counsel. The Rickman Law Firm prides itself on its aggressive approach towards difficult cases, as well as its success in helping people just like you get the justice that they deserve. For your free consultation with the best sex crime and sexual battery lawyer in Tampa, fill out our consultation form or call The Rickman Law Firm any time today at 813-999-0502.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

How Can A Tampa Sex Crimes Attorney Help Me With My Case?

The implications of a sexual battery allegation are very grave. Aside from an notoriously lengthy and arduous legal process, the impact that a sex crime allegation could have on your reputation and quality of life is severe. However, you can better protect yourself when you are being represented by a specialized sex crimes attorney.

Hiring a sexual battery attorney in Tampa will help you to achieve a more favorable outcome. They will be prepared with proper skill, knowledge, and expertise in order to strengthen your defense and effectively navigate the legal process. The Rickman Law Firm’s aggressive attorneys have over a decade’s worth of successful experience in court and in the legal process.

Understand the Law

The legislature concerning sex crimes is very seriously considered and can vary between states. Hiring a sexual battery lawyer in Tampa will allow a professional, deep, and close understanding of the laws concerning sex crimes that only an expert could have. They will be able to explain your accusation and the implications during the legal proceedings of your case. This could include the potential prosecution position, any penalties that could potentially be applicable to your situation, and the legal defense resources, strategies, and tools that may be available for your disposal.

If you are representing yourself during your case’s legal process, you are more susceptible to being caught off-guard by the intricacies of sex crimes legislature. In hiring a proper sex crimes attorney, you are better equipping yourself to be able to handle and successfully maneuver your case. In addition, a skilled, local attorney will know how to effectively and properly protect your constitutional rights during the legal process. They will be proactive in protecting you from illegally-seized evidence through coercion or underhanded means.

Thoroughly Investigate Your Case to Create Effective Defense Strategies

Your Tampa sexual battery attorney will immediately begin their own investigation on the evidence that the prosecution has gathered against you. After 15 days of filing the Notice of Discovery, the prosecution will be required to disclose the evidence that they have gathered for the defense team to inspect, test, and record. This is the portion of the case where your attorney will be able to begin creating defense strategies based on the prosecution’s claim and stance. They will thoroughly comb through the evidence to find any weaknesses or inconsistencies in the prosecution’s case that could strengthen your claim. This strategy will allow your attorney to discover any potential challenges that could be made on the grounds of evidence refutation. Attorney Anthony Rickman may be able to gather enough exculpatory evidence during this period to craft your defense strategy and have your fines lessened, the charge dropped, or even get your case dismissed.

Next, the attorney will begin assembling their own evidence in favor of you. After reviewing forensic and physical evidence such as DNA results and photographs, they will begin conducting interviews and gathering personal statements with witnesses, relevant informants, and any other affiliated parties. They will inspect histories and relationships between you and the plaintiff. In addition, they will also record your own personal statement. At this point, your attorney can also collect any electronic evidence, such as surveillance footage or wiretap recordings. They may also collect any statements or reports from experts regarding you, the plaintiff, or your case, including mental and physical examinations, as well as any scientific results from tests or laboratory experiments. These evidence pieces will play the largest role in your defense claim.

Fight For You In Court

If you have a sex crime case in Florida, the first step that you need to take is hiring an attorney to represent you in court. While you do have the option to represent yourself, having an expert who is fighting for you will position you for a more favorable outcome in your case. In court during your trial, your The Rickman Law Firm attorney will be aggressive and assertive in using skillful strategies to fight for your justice. While sexual battery cases are among the most complex and lengthy in the Florida criminal justice system, your attorney will know how to navigate every single step of the court proceedings to move towards your favor and acquittal. 

Some tactics that may be used by your sexual battery attorney expert to mitigate the penalties or charge elements are dismissing charges, reducing charges to a lesser offense, getting evidence that is either illegal or irrelevant thrown out, or providing mitigating circumstances. Alternatively, they may negotiate a plea bargaining deal to reduce the charge. Regardless of the specific strategy, your Tampa sexual battery attorney will work strategically to fight for your justice throughout every step of your case.

Protecting Your Rights

The right sexual battery attorney in Tampa is one who is qualified to represent you with the proper relevant experience, knowledge, and skills to defend you and your rights in court. A sexual battery case carries serious repercussions and we are prepared to be aggressive and assertive when fighting for you. You deserve justice and we are committed to preserving and protecting that during the entirety of your case’s legal process.

If you are wanting legal consultation, representation, and protection, contact our office immediately. Our office is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your convenience and justice. Call us at 813-999-0502 or fill out our consultation form and one of our expert sexual battery lawyers will be in contact with you very soon.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

5 Important Questions to Ask A Tampa Federal Criminal Defense Attorney Before You Hire Them

A criminal defense attorney can be the biggest asset to your case if chosen well and correctly. To ensure that your attorney is the right fit for you, there are a few factors that must be considered.The Rickman Law Firm prides itself on the caliber of its attorneys and understands that each case is unique and has varying needs from one another. That is why you should hire a Tampa federal criminal defense attorney accordingly. Your attorney should make you feel comfortable and confident with the details of your case. For your confidence, here are some important questions to ask any criminal defense attorney before you choose to hire them.

What Is Your Experience With Handling Cases Such as Mine?

The first question that you must ask a federal criminal defense attorney in Tampa should be concerning their experience and background with your case type. To ensure that your case is being handled and supported properly, your attorney should know how to navigate your specific case type well. If you are facing a sex crime charge on the count of sexual assault, then you should be working with a lawyer who has high rates of successful experience, both in and out of court, with cases similar to yours.

When choosing to hire a lawyer with a specialization, you should ensure that they have ample experience in cases that are relevant and similar to yours. In addition, hiring an attorney who has successful trial experience will provide more security, in the case that your case may go to court. When initially consulting with your attorney, some of the first questions that should be asked include:

  • What is your specialty?
  • How many years have you been practicing law?
  • How many cases have you taken to court? 
  • What is your experience with handling my type of case?
  • How comfortable are you with handling cases like mine, especially if it goes to court?
  • What is your success rate for cases not on trial and trial?

What Are Your Fees? How Is Payment Determined?

Another vital factor to consider when consulting with a Tampa federal criminal defense lawyer is cost, as well as how payment is determined. You should be completely aware of how much your lawyer will charge for their services, what the payment plan is, and whether there is an upfront fee or only payment if your case is won. Some attorneys will charge a flat fee, while others may charge by the hour for their services. You must hire an attorney who is completely transparent about their fees and payment plans with you before being hired. When interviewing an attorney, ensure that they are being upfront about any potential costs, as well as how their legal fees are structured. Will there be witness costs, investigation costs, or any other costs along the way? 

If your attorney charges a flat fee, then you should ask about everything that that fee includes, and whether the fee needs to be paid upfront, after your case is successful, or if there is an installed payment ability. If your attorney charges an hourly fee, then you must ask if there will be a need to pay a retainer. You can ask to be provided with an estimate of what their fees would be, as well as any additional expenses, regarding your case. You can also shop around with different lawyers to compare estimates before choosing to hire a specific attorney.

What Will Our Communication Be Like?

When working with an attorney, communication is one of the most important factors. You should consider hiring an attorney who is easy to communicate with, as well as someone who will be proactive in keeping you informed about the progress of your case. Will they be available to answer any questions and concerns you may have throughout the case? What are their communication rules, goals, and boundaries?

In lawyer-client partnerships, your attorney serves as your representative and your voice throughout the entire legal process. Clear lines of communication are imperative when choosing to hire your criminal defense lawyer. You should be able to have an expectation of the frequency and forms of communication that you will have with the attorney representing and defending you throughout the criminal defense legal process.

What Will This Process Be Like? Is My Case Strong?

Another vital question that can often be forgotten is what your own case’s legal process would be like, and if your case can be strongly supported. You are allowed to ask for the attorney’s initial thoughts during the consultation, especially as they would have the specific legal, case-type experience, and knowledge to be able to provide you with. In addition, you may want to ask about alternative options that can be taken to avoid going to trial, including an option of working out a fair plea bargain, along with any general potential strategies that the attorney may have.

You should have a clear understanding of what the trial process looks like, including any possible steps, and what is to be expected of both you and your attorney. While your criminal defense attorney might have some insight about how your case proceedings may go, no reputable lawyer will promise certainty of complete case success and an easy trial. Whoever you hire should be open and direct, and help prepare you with a high degree of realism of possible expectations and any mitigating circumstances.

What Is Your Strategy Regarding Approaching My Case?

Another question to ask a criminal defense attorney is what their strategy for approaching your case could be. This includes how they would plan to defend you and the steps that they will take to achieve the best possible outcome. In addition, you should be specific in asking about options to avoid going to jail and lessen any potential consequences.

Asking this question will also provide insight into how experienced the attorney is with your type of case. It is vital that your attorney can be familiar enough with your type of case that they can have some strategies and actions after familiarizing themself with your claim and accusation.

Ensure That You Are In the Hands of An Experienced and Skilled Criminal Defense Attorney

Hiring a criminal defense attorney is a serious decision that should not be taken lightly. Asking the right questions before hiring an attorney can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. By asking about their experience and expertise, fees and payment plans, communication, trial experience, and strategy and approach, you can make an informed decision and choose the right attorney for your case.

For your free consultation with a Tampa federal criminal defense lawyer, fill out our consultation form or call The Rickman Law Firm any time today at 813-999-0502.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

Why is Florida the Harshest State on Sex Crimes?

Florida has some of the harshest restrictions on sex offenders in the United States. If you ever walk across Arcadia, you’ll see a facility wrapped around with barbed wire. No one can get in or out of there, for it is home to 650 men that the state fears could molest or rape if they get out. These individuals have completed their sentences, but are still considered a risk to the community, so are forced to put themselves under civil commitment. 

But this is just one of many barriers in Florida facing sex offenders. In 2014, 7 homeless people rallied and sued Miami-Dade County for putting forth an ordinance that forced several offenders to become homeless. 

Instances like these have many wondering why Florida is the harshest state on sex crimes. Our Tampa federal defense lawyer team explains below.

Wide Range of Sex Crimes in Florida

The first reason the Florida court is bullish about harshly punishing sexual offenders is the wide array of sex crimes that are prevalent in the region. 

  1. Prostitution: Prostitution is the act of engaging in sexual activity in exchange for money or other gains. Over the past decade, prostitution has reduced on the streets but has started to thrive online. 
  2. Sexual Battery: Sexual battery cases have started to see a massive uptick in the last five years. Our federal criminal defense lawyer team in Tampa found that in 2019, 106 out of every 100,000 reported sexual battery. While the pandemic reduced it to 87.3 the next year, the number has since bounced back. 
  3. Indecent Exposure: Indecent exposure is a non-forcible sex offense where a person is alleged to expose sexual organs in a public area. 
  4. Lewd and Lascivious: A person allegedly touching a minor (under 16) or engaging in sexual activity with them is charged with Lewd and lascivious. 
  5. Child pornography: Owning, possessing, producing, or distributing child pornography is counted as a federal crime, needing a federal defense lawyer in Tampa to fight the case.
  6. Failure to register as a sex offender: Under Florida law, individuals who have committed sexual offenses must register as a sex offender. Failure to do so leads to criminal charges and convictions.

Extended Penalties for Sex Offenders that Have Served Their Sentence

The qualms of sex offenders do not end once they have served their sentence. In addition to fulfilling their civil commitment, where they are mentally assessed to see if they are ready to step back into society, there are many societal restrictions put on them as well – making it essential for the ex-convicts to find a good federal defense lawyer in Tampa.

Those with the blot of a sex offense on their record have a hard time finding jobs and even finding homes. To make matters worse, over 160 municipalities have their own ordinances that are even harsher than what Florida state dictates.

Getting Your Life Back After Serving Your Sentence

Once you have served your sentence for a criminal offense, or even if you have just been accused of a sex crime, your life can take a downturn. Talking to a federal criminal defense lawyer in Tampa can help you immensely. 

In addition, to help you expunge the records, and stand with you so that you can fight against the false allegations, our federal criminal defense lawyer in Tampa, will help you get your life back on track.

Contact us today for a no-obligation, confidential, and unbiased consultation.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

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