Don Waggoner Law

Orlando and Kissimmee Criminal Defense Lawyer and DUI Attorney

DO NOT TALK TO LAW ENFORCEMENT WITHOUT FIRST CONSULTING A LAWYER!!!

CRIMINAL DEFENSE | Domestic Violence

•  Assault and Battery    •  Maximum Penalties    •  Felony Battery    •  Assualt    •  Culpable Homicide    •  Domestic Battery by Strangulation   
•  Aggravated Battery    •  Stalking    •  Abuse of Children

Assault, Battery, Abuse of Children, and Domestic Violence Offenses

Assault, battery, the abuse of children, and domestic violence offenses are considered violent offenses.  A conviction for an offense in these categories can carry consequences well beyond the courtroom – such as loss of right to remain in property you own, loss of the right to see your children, loss of the right to possess a firearm, loss of the ability to become a teacher, cop, fireman, or join the military or lose such a job if you are currently employed in one of them, restrictions on travel to other countries, and many more.  Accusations of assault, battery, abuse of children, or domestic violence often result in Injunctions being filed, which cause even more problems.


Orlando and Kissimmee Criminal Defense attorney Don Waggoner is very experienced in this area of the law.  From 1995-1996 he was the senior defense attorney for domestic violence crimes for the Public Defender.  As such, he tried 37 cases in that year, and defended 100s more.  As a private attorney he has defended more than a hundred cases involving assault, battery and domestic violence.  Orlando and Kissimmee Criminal Defense Attorney Don Waggoner will help you to try to get back in your home, to try to get your children back, and to try to beat the charges against you or to get the charges dropped.
If you have been charged with either Assault, Battery, Child Abuse, or Domestic Violence, call Orlando and Kissimmee Lawyer Don Waggoner as soon as possible. The sooner you contact me, the sooner I can begin work on your case. In some cases, early intervention by Attorney Don Waggoner can prevent charges from being filed at all.


>

Assault  F.S. 784.011 &  Battery   F.S. 784.03

Assault and Battery are two different offenses. Assault merely requires an intent to cause bodily harm to someone and that they have a legitimate fear that you are about to do so. Battery requires that you intend to cause bodily harm to someone and that you actually do so. The harm can be merely an unwanted touching. These two charges are usually misdemeanors, but can become felonies if the assault or battery is aggravated in some way. The two charges are frequently associated with domestic violence.

Maximum Penalties include:

Assault (simple):
60 days jail, 6 months probation, $500.00 fine - 2nd degree misdemeanor
Aggravated Assault:
F.S. 784.021
5 years in prison, 5 years probation, $5,000.00 fine - 3rd degree felony - if a firearm is used, it carries a 3 year minimum mandatory (day for day) prison sentence - this crime requires the use of a deadly weapon or the threat to use one
Battery (simple):
1 year in jail, 1 year probation, $1000.00 fine
Aggravated Battery:
F.S. 784.045
15 years prison, 15 years probation, $10,000.00 fine - 2nd degree Felony - if a firearm is used, it may carry either a 10 or 20 year minimum mandatory (day for day) prison sentence

 

First offenders frequently receive diversion or probation for misdemeanors and would have to
attend a 26 week batterer's intervention class.


F.S. 784.03Battery; felony battery

(1)(a) The offense of battery occurs when a person:
1. Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other; or
2. Intentionally causes bodily harm to another person.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (2), a person who commits battery commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(2) A person who has one prior conviction for battery, aggravated battery, or felony battery and who commits any second or subsequent battery commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. For purposes of this subsection, “conviction” means a determination of guilt that is the result of a plea or a trial, regardless of whether adjudication is withheld or a plea of nolo contendere is entered.

F.S. 784.011Assault.

(1) An “assault” is an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent.
(2) Whoever commits an assault shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.


F.S. 784.05  Culpable negligence.

(1) Whoever, through culpable negligence, exposes another person to personal injury commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(2) Whoever, through culpable negligence, inflicts actual personal injury on another commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(3) Whoever violates subsection (1) by storing or leaving a loaded firearm within the reach or easy access of a minor commits, if the minor obtains the firearm and uses it to inflict injury or death upon himself or herself or any other person, a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

However, this subsection does not apply:

(a) If the firearm was stored or left in a securely locked box or container or in a location which a reasonable person would have believed to be secure, or was securely locked with a trigger lock;
(b) If the minor obtains the firearm as a result of an unlawful entry by any person;
(c) To injuries resulting from target or sport shooting accidents or hunting accidents; or
(d) To members of the Armed Forces, National Guard, or State Militia, or to police or other law enforcement officers, with respect to firearm possession by a minor which occurs during or incidental to the performance of their official duties.
When any minor child is accidentally shot by another family member, no arrest shall be made pursuant to this subsection prior to 7 days after the date of the shooting. With respect to any parent or guardian of any deceased minor, the investigating officers shall file all findings and evidence with the state attorney’s office with respect to violations of this subsection. The state attorney shall evaluate such evidence and shall take such action as he or she deems appropriate under the circumstances and may file an information against the appropriate parties.
1(4) As used in this act, the term “minor” means any person under the age of 16.


F.S. 784.041Felony battery; domestic battery by strangulation.

(1) A person commits felony battery if he or she:
(a) Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other; and
(b) Causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement.
(2)(a) A person commits domestic battery by strangulation if the person knowingly and intentionally, against the will of another, impedes the normal breathing or circulation of the blood of a family or household member or of a person with whom he or she is in a dating relationship, so as to create a risk of or cause great bodily harm by applying pressure on the throat or neck of the other person or by blocking the nose or mouth of the other person. This paragraph does not apply to any act of medical diagnosis, treatment, or prescription which is authorized under the laws of this state.
(b) As used in this subsection, the term:
1. “Family or household member” has the same meaning as in s. 741.28.
2. “Dating relationship” means a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature.
(3) A person who commits felony battery or domestic battery by strangulation commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

F.S. 784.045Aggravated battery

(1)(a) A person commits aggravated battery who, in committing battery:
1. Intentionally or knowingly causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement; or
2. Uses a deadly weapon.
(b) A person commits aggravated battery if the person who was the victim of the battery was pregnant at the time of the offense and the offender knew or should have known that the victim was pregnant.
(2) Whoever commits aggravated battery shall be guilty of a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
F.S. 784.047 Penalties for violating protective injunction against violators.—A person who willfully violates an injunction for protection against repeat violence, sexual violence, or dating violence, issued pursuant to s. 784.046, or a foreign protection order accorded full faith and credit pursuant to s. 741.315 by:
(1) Refusing to vacate the dwelling that the parties share;
(2) Going to, or being within 500 feet of, the petitioner’s residence, school, place of employment, or a specified place frequented regularly by the petitioner and any named family or household member;
(3) Committing an act of repeat violence, sexual violence, or dating violence against the petitioner;
(4) Committing any other violation of the injunction through an intentional unlawful threat, word, or act to do violence to the petitioner;
(5) Telephoning, contacting, or otherwise communicating with the petitioner directly or indirectly, unless the injunction specifically allows indirect contact through a third party;
(6) Knowingly and intentionally coming within 100 feet of the petitioner’s motor vehicle, whether or not that vehicle is occupied;
(7) Defacing or destroying the petitioner’s personal property, including the petitioner’s motor vehicle; or
(8) Refusing to surrender firearms or ammunition if ordered to do so by the court,
commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.


F.S. 784.048  Stalking; definitions; penalties.

(1) As used in this section, the term:
(a) “Harass” means to engage in a course of conduct directed at a specific person which causes substantial emotional distress to that person and serves no legitimate purpose.
(b) “Course of conduct” means a pattern of conduct composed of a series of acts over a period of time, however short, which evidences a continuity of purpose. The term does not include constitutionally protected activity such as picketing or other organized protests.
(c) “Credible threat” means a verbal or nonverbal threat, or a combination of the two, including threats delivered by electronic communication or implied by a pattern of conduct, which places the person who is the target of the threat in reasonable fear for his or her safety or the safety of his or her family members or individuals closely associated with the person, and which is made with the apparent ability to carry out the threat to cause such harm. It is not necessary to prove that the person making the threat had the intent to actually carry out the threat. The present incarceration of the person making the threat is not a bar to prosecution under this section.
(d) “Cyberstalk” means to engage in a course of conduct to communicate, or to cause to be communicated, words, images, or language by or through the use of electronic mail or electronic communication, directed at a specific person, causing substantial emotional distress to that person and serving no legitimate purpose.
(2) A person who willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks another person commits the offense of stalking, a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(3) A person who willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks another person and makes a credible threat to that person commits the offense of aggravated stalking, a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(4) A person who, after an injunction for protection against repeat violence, sexual violence, or dating violence pursuant to s. 784.046, or an injunction for protection against domestic violence pursuant to s. 741.30, or after any other court-imposed prohibition of conduct toward the subject person or that person’s property, knowingly, willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks another person commits the offense of aggravated stalking, a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(5) A person who willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks a child under 16 years of age commits the offense of aggravated stalking, a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(6) A law enforcement officer may arrest, without a warrant, any person that he or she has probable cause to believe has violated this section.
(7) A person who, after having been sentenced for a violation of s. 794.011, s. 800.04, or s. 847.0135(5) and prohibited from contacting the victim of the offense under s. 921.244, willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follows, harasses, or cyberstalks the victim commits the offense of aggravated stalking, a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(8) The punishment imposed under this section shall run consecutive to any former sentence imposed for a conviction for any offense under s. 794.011, s. 800.04, or s. 847.0135(5).
(9)(a) The sentencing court shall consider, as a part of any sentence, issuing an order restraining the defendant from any contact with the victim, which may be valid for up to 10 years, as determined by the court. It is the intent of the Legislature that the length of any such order be based upon the seriousness of the facts before the court, the probability of future violations by the perpetrator, and the safety of the victim and his or her family members or individuals closely associated with the victim.
(b) The order may be issued by the court even if the defendant is sentenced to a state prison or a county jail or even if the imposition of the sentence is suspended and the defendant is placed on probation.

F.S. 784.062  Misuse of laser lighting devices.
(1) As used in subsection (2), the term “laser lighting device” means a handheld device, not affixed to a firearm, which emits a laser beam that is designed to be used by the operator as a pointer or highlighter to indicate, mark, or identify a specific position, place, item, or object. As used in subsection (3), the term “laser lighting device” means any device designed or used to amplify electromagnetic radiation by stimulated emission.
(2) Any person who knowingly and willfully shines, points, or focuses the beam of a laser lighting device at a law enforcement officer, engaged in the performance of his or her official duties, in such a manner that would cause a reasonable person to believe that a firearm is pointed at him or her commits a noncriminal violation, punishable as provided in s. 775.083.
(3)(a) Any person who knowingly and willfully shines, points, or focuses the beam of a laser lighting device on an individual operating a motor vehicle, vessel, or aircraft commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(b) Any person who knowingly and willfully shines, points, or focuses the beam of a laser lighting device on an individual operating a motor vehicle, vessel, or aircraft and such act results in bodily injury commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.


Abuse of Children F.S. 827.03

Abuse, aggravated abuse, and neglect of a child; penalties.—
(1) DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section, the term:
(a) “Aggravated child abuse” occurs when a person:
1. Commits aggravated battery on a child;
2. Willfully tortures, maliciously punishes, or willfully and unlawfully cages a child; or
3. Knowingly or willfully abuses a child and in so doing causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement to the child.
(b) “Child abuse” means:
1. Intentional infliction of physical or mental injury upon a child;
2. An intentional act that could reasonably be expected to result in physical or mental injury to a child; or
3. Active encouragement of any person to commit an act that results or could reasonably be expected to result in physical or mental injury to a child.
(c) “Maliciously” means wrongfully, intentionally, and without legal justification or excuse. Maliciousness may be established by circumstances from which one could conclude that a reasonable parent would not have engaged in the damaging acts toward the child for any valid reason and that the primary purpose of the acts was to cause the victim unjustifiable pain or injury.
(d) “Mental injury” means injury to the intellectual or psychological capacity of a child as evidenced by a discernible and substantial impairment in the ability of the child to function within the normal range of performance and behavior as supported by expert testimony.
(e) “Neglect of a child” means:
1. A caregiver’s failure or omission to provide a child with the care, supervision, and services necessary to maintain the child’s physical and mental health, including, but not limited to, food, nutrition, clothing, shelter, supervision, medicine, and medical services that a prudent person would consider essential for the well-being of the child; or
2. A caregiver’s failure to make a reasonable effort to protect a child from abuse, neglect, or exploitation by another person.
Except as otherwise provided in this section, neglect of a child may be based on repeated conduct or on a single incident or omission that results in, or could reasonably be expected to result in, serious physical or mental injury, or a substantial risk of death, to a child.


(2) OFFENSES.

(a) A person who commits aggravated child abuse commits a felony of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(b) A person who willfully or by culpable negligence neglects a child and in so doing causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement to the child commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(c) A person who knowingly or willfully abuses a child without causing great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement to the child commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(d) A person who willfully or by culpable negligence neglects a child without causing great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement to the child commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.


(3) EXPERT TESTIMONY.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), a physician may not provide expert testimony in a criminal child abuse case unless the physician is a physician licensed under chapter 458 or chapter 459 or has obtained certification as an expert witness pursuant to s. 458.3175.
(b) A physician may not provide expert testimony in a criminal child abuse case regarding mental injury unless the physician is a physician licensed under chapter 458 or chapter 459 who has completed an accredited residency in psychiatry or has obtained certification as an expert witness pursuant to s. 458.3175.
(c) A psychologist may not give expert testimony in a criminal child abuse case regarding mental injury unless the psychologist is licensed under chapter 490.
(d) The expert testimony requirements of this subsection apply only to criminal child abuse cases and not to family court or dependency court cases.