If you have been charged with Felony Battery or in the state of Florida, one of three things must have happened. You touched or struck someone against their will and either:
- Caused great bodily harm
- Caused permanent disability, or
- Caused permanent disfigurement
- Or you’ve had a prior misdemeanor battery conviction. (that means adjudication)
To be charged with a misdemeanor battery, you simply need to touch or strike another person against their will. I have seen cases where a person was taken to jail during a heated domestic argument for licking the face of their spouse. Seriously. Obviously this was not a felony battery, but it was still a misdemeanor for which the person was taken to jail! That is why it is so important to call our experienced criminal defense attorneys as soon as you are arrested for a crime.
The statute for felony battery makes it a third degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison. However there is also a crime called Aggravated Battery. This crime also requires the same kind of injury to occur, but makes the punishment a second degree felony punishable by up to fifteen years in prison. This statute makes it clear that if a “deadly weapon” is used in committing the battery the crime is elevated to a second degree felony.
It is important to note that a “deadly weapon” is not just a gun or a knife. A car is a deadly weapon. A rope or a chair, or even a grapefruit can be a deadly weapon! Use of these household items to cause serious bodily injury to another will also automatically place a person in the range of mandatory prison under the Florida Sentencing Guidelines. What is worse, the statute says the injury can be caused “intentionally” or “knowingly”. You may not “intend” to cause serious bodily injury but you may know that your actions could cause that result!
You will need our experienced Pasco County criminal defense attorneys to present your case in a light that makes this clear or you could be heading to prison.