Criminal charges are very difficult to defend against and require a lawyer who understands how prosecutors think. At Lockett Law, our firm is led by a former state’s attorney who has worked in this field of law for years. Please contact us if you or a loved one has been arrested, or if the police request that you come into the station to talk. It is never too early to begin planning your criminal defense.
Criminal Defense in Fleming Island, FL
Our Fleming Island criminal defense lawyer has helped many people facing the following criminal charges involving:
- Drug crimes. A conviction for possession, manufacture, or trafficking can carry stiff penalties. Even small amounts of marijuana can result in a criminal record that follows a person around like a dark cloud for the rest of their lives.
- Florida has stepped up its enforcement of DUI laws. Even if this is your first arrest, you are looking at possible time in jail and other penalties, like a suspended license.
- Sex crimes. Rape, sexual assault, and child pornography all carry serious penalties. Even worse, a convict must register as a sex offender, which means their convictions become public record.
- Violent crimes. Murder, manslaughter, DUI manslaughter, assault—we have experience defending people from all manner of violent crimes. The state doles out serious sentences for those convicted.
Felonies versus Misdemeanors: What’s the Difference?
Most crimes in Florida are classified as either a felony or misdemeanor. Of the two, misdemeanor offenses are less serious and can result in less time in jail and lower fines. If convicted of a felony, a defendant can end up in state prison for more than a year.
However, it’s a myth to assume that misdemeanor offenses are “minor.” They are anything but. Even a simple misdemeanor drug possession charge could cost a person a job or an apartment, since employers and landlords often perform criminal background checks on applicants. A misdemeanor can also jeopardize a professional license or the ability to gain admission to college.
All criminal charges warrant an aggressive defense. If convicted of a felony, you can lose the right to vote and to possess a firearm, among other civil rights. We understand how hard it is to recover from a criminal conviction, so we do everything possible to keep you free.
Raising the Right Defense
In a criminal case, felony or misdemeanor, the prosecutor has the burden of proving our clients guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Sometimes prosecutors don’t have the kind of solid evidence they need—their witnesses lack credibility, or there is no physical evidence. To defeat the charges, a defendant sometimes only needs to stand up and point out the gaps in the evidence.
We don’t stop there. Instead, the team at Lockett Law will actively find exculpatory evidence and try to suppress any evidence that has been illegally obtained. In drug and DUI cases, for example, officers sometimes lacked the necessary probable cause to make a stop in the first place. In other cases, police illegally search a person’s home or car and try to introduce evidence collected in violation of our client’s constitutional rights. When evidence is suppressed, many cases fall apart.
Why You Should Hire Us
When facing criminal charges, now is not the time to put your trust in an inexperienced lawyer. Lee Lockett has been practicing criminal law for over 20 years. Our firm has experience in all phases of a criminal prosecution, from arraignment and bail, to interrogation, pretrial motions, and jury selection.
With our team by your side, we can force the prosecutor to turn over the evidence it intends to use against you, so there are no surprises if we go to trial. We can also aggressively negotiate a favorable resolution that allows us to avoid having to defend your case in a courtroom. Sometimes it is possible to get charges reduced, dismissed, or deferred.
And if we need to defend you at trial, we will work overtime to keep out any unfairly prejudicial evidence, such as proof of gang ties or members of your family who are criminal. In most cases, proof of prior criminal convictions can be kept out of the trial, at least before the sentencing phase.
Call a Criminal Defense Attorney in Fleming Island, FL Today
If you have been arrested, please contact Lockett Law. There are many mistakes defendants make that are entirely avoidable if they have an attorney representing them from the very beginning of a case. To speak with a lawyer, call us today or send us an online message. We are available 24/7.