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Along with providing for other basic rights, the Fifth Amendment asserts that no person shall be “subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb.” This provision is known as “double jeopardy.” Essentially, you are protected from being prosecuted twice for the same crime. However, as with numerous laws, there are exceptions.
In this article, we discuss double jeopardy and whether or not it applies to your case. If you’re in a situation where your freedom depends on double jeopardy, we hope that you’ve already consulted a federal criminal defense lawyer in St. Petersburg. If not, an attorney with The Rickman Law Firm is standing by.
Double jeopardy prevents an individual from being prosecuted twice for the same crime, regardless of acquittal or conviction. Once acquitted, the prosecution will be unable to bring new charges against a defendant even when new evidence is discovered that proves their guilt. In order for double jeopardy to apply to your case, the prosecution must place you in “jeopardy,” meaning that they must first put you at risk of being charged with a crime. This normally occurs when an individual is brought before a judge and jury.
Related: Common Federal Crimes in Florida
Double jeopardy extends to all misdemeanors, felonies, and juvenile delinquency adjudications. However, there are possible exceptions. To begin, double jeopardy does not apply to a retrial. If a prior ruling was overruled in an appeals court, you’re going to have to plead your case all over again (hopefully with a federal criminal defense lawyer in St. Petersburg by your side). But the most common exception occurs when a case is tried at the state and federal level. Because state and federal courts are separate entities, there’s nothing stopping them from trying an individual for the same crime. You could end up winning your case at the state level only to be tried and convicted at the federal level, or vice versa.
The above perfectly illustrates why you need an attorney who is experienced at defending cases in both state and federal court. Whether you’ve been accused of murder, kidnapping, aggravated assault, sex crimes, drug trafficking, or white-collar crimes, you stand to benefit from legal representation that can defend you no matter the circumstances of your case.
Anthony Rickman has successfully defended clients accused of a wide array of crimes in both state and federal court. He has the skills, knowledge, and experience to defend you regardless of your opponent, whether it be the State of Florida or the U.S. Government. If you’ve been accused of a crime and are facing the possibility of pleading your case before a judge, consult Anthony Rickman, a federal criminal defense attorney in St. Petersburg.
For a free consultation with a federal criminal defense attorney in St. Petersburg, please contact The Rickman Law Firm today.
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.