Aggravated Battery Defense Attorney in Tampa, FL
Aggravated battery is a common crime in the Florida court system, the frequent end result of bar brawls and domestic fights. That said, it is also a very serious charge. Even first-time convictions come with mandatory prison time, and a criminal record with an aggravated battery mark on it can cause lifelong problems with employers, police and loved ones.
If you or a loved one are facing aggravated battery charges in the Tampa, FL, area, call Armando Edmiston, an experienced Tampa aggravated battery criminal defense lawyer, today.
Aggravated Battery Defined in Tampa, FL
Aggravated battery is a more serious cousin of simple battery, which is defined as intentionally touching or striking another person against that person’s will or intentionally causing harm to another person. To commit aggravated battery, an offender must intentionally or knowingly cause great bodily harm, permanent disability or permanent disfigurement during an act of battery, or must commit battery with a deadly weapon. An offender who batters a woman he knows or should know is pregnant can also be prosecuted for aggravated battery. Aggravated battery is a second-degree felony punishable by as many as 15 years in prison. Because it is a violent felony, mandatory sentences apply. A single conviction with no prior record, no injury to the victim and no other aggravating factors carries a minimum of 21 months in prison.
Aggravated Battery Sentencing Enhancements in Tampa, FL
The severity level of this crime and its penalties increase under certain circumstances. Aggravated battery against staff at detention facilities for violent sex offenders is a first-degree felony with a mandatory penalty of between 21 months and 30 years in prison. Where aggravated battery is committed against an on-duty law enforcement officer or employee, a corrections officer, an emergency medical provider, a firefighter, a transit employee, or a security guard, it is a first-degree felony with a mandatory sentence of five to 30 years. Aggravated battery against a school, sports, child welfare or health official is a first-degree felony punishable by 21 months to 30 years, as is aggravated battery by an inmate against a visitor or fellow inmate, aggravated battery on a code inspector, and aggravated battery against a person aged 65 or older. The same is true of aggravated battery when it is committed on the grounds of a religious institution while the victim is on the property to participate in religious services.
Aggravated Battery and Deadly Weapons in Tampa, FL
Aggravated battery often involves the use of deadly weapons. This can be anything from a knife pulled during a bar brawl to a dish thrown during a domestic argument. Because this type of aggravated battery is merely a form of simple battery plus a deadly weapon, it does not need to cause serious injury, only the touching, striking, or low-level injury required of simple battery. Although the use of a deadly weapon already turns simple battery into aggravated battery, the use of a gun or explosive device makes the crime much more serious, boosting the minimum sentence to 10 years under Florida’s so-called “10/20/Life” law. If the gun or explosive device goes off, the minimum increases to 20 years. If the gun or explosive device causes great bodily harm, a sentence of 25 years to life applies.