How the prosecution sees your case.
How we see it.
Fort Lauderdale domestic violence attorneys Philip M. Snyder and Marc P. Lyons provide courtroom defense for people charged with serious felony and misdemeanor domestic violence charges throughout South Florida.
Fight fire with fire.
The law regarding Domestic Violence is complex and highly specialized. The State of Florida zealously prosecutes crimes of Domestic Violence. Commonly, a State Attorney’s Office will create a Special Unit comprising of veteran Assistant State Attorneys to prosecute suspected offenders of Domestic Violence.
As a former Assistant State Attorney assigned to a special Domestic Violence Unit, Philip M. Snyder prosecuted thousands of individuals charged with assault, battery, stalking, false imprisonment, and violations of restraining orders. Philip M. Snyder can attest first-hand that the key to a successful resolution in these cases is hiring an attorney who is familiar with the specific statutes, motions, and penalties associated with domestic related crimes. Our team of criminal defense attorneys at Lyons, Snyder & Collin have experience handling all types of misdemeanor and felony crimes of Domestic Violence. After reviewing your side of the case, we can effectively present your options, some of which may ultimately result in the dismissal of the charges.
Knowledge is power.
“Domestic violence” means any assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member (Florida Statute 741.28)
“Family or household member” means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.
The early bird gets the worm.
Florida law requires that every person arrested on a charge of domestic violence, regardless of your criminal history, will be held in jail “without bond” until a specially assigned Domestic Violence Judge sets a bond. An Assistant State Attorney and Victim Advocate will request the Judge to impose conditions that act as restraints on your movement or travel. The most common of these is a “No Contact” order which precludes you from having any direct or indirect contact with the victim including telephone, in person, e-mail, regular mail, text messages, or through a third party.
The Fort Lauderdale domestic violence attorneys at Lyons, Snyder & Collin act immediately to investigate the alleged claim and prepare the best possible defenses. We zealously advocate your position at a bond hearing and request lesser restrictive bond conditions.
Balancing aggression with delicate handling.
It is a common misconception that a victim of a crime has the right to either “file” or “drop” charges. The State Attorney’s Office has the final word on whether to file a criminal charge. The State Attorney’s Office will actively encourage a victim to prosecute even if they recant their initial statement to the police, file a waiver of prosecution, or decline to cooperate.
The attorneys at Lyons, Snyder & Collin proactively contact the State Attorney’s Office to discuss alternatives to bringing formal charges. We understand what information and affidavits the prosecution will request before dismissing the case.
Know your enemy.
Florida Law allows a police officer to make an arrest for domestic violence if there are any visible signs of abuse that can be substantiated by other evidence. These visible signs can include something as insignificant as a scratch, bite, or red mark.
Since most Domestic Violence assault or battery cases arise outside of the presence of a law enforcement officer, arriving officers must rely on recollections of the person who called 911 to describe how the “crime” took place. The “victim” has a safe haven to make up accusations of violence. The current system allows individuals to inappropriately utilize the police power of the State to settle “in-house” disagreements, gain a strategic advantage in a custody battle, or delay the expiration of an immigration Visa.
When the police arrive on scene in reference to a domestic violence call, policy dictates that they make an arrest regardless of the “victim’s” desires and even though both parties deny that any domestic violence took place. When making an arrest, the police do not consider the “victim’s” motives which could include spite, jealousy, or ill-will. Moreover, the police often do not investigate whether the “victim” was the first aggressor.
The Fort Lauderdale domestic violence attorneys at Lyons, Snyder & Collin will contact the State Attorney’s Office before charges are filed to provide your side of the story and disclose possible motives of the “victim.”
Special cases require special lawyers.
The Florida Legislature has created specific statues to more severely punish individuals charged with Domestic Violence crimes.
If a person is found guilty of, has had adjudication withheld on, or has pled nolo contendere to a crime of domestic violence, that person shall be ordered by the court to a minimum term of 1 year’s probation and the court shall order that the defendant attend a batterers’ intervention program as a condition of probation. Unlike most other criminal charges, Domestic Violence convictions cannot be expunged or sealed from the arrest record. The only exceptions are if the case is resolved by acquittal at trial or if the charges are dismissed.
If a person is adjudicated guilty of a crime of domestic violence and the person has intentionally caused bodily harm to another person, the court shall order the person to serve a minimum of 5 days in the county jail as part of the sentence imposed.
Experience combating injustice.
From the second we are hired, the domestic violence attorneys at Lyons, Snyder & Collin work to minimize the charges against you and place you in the best possible light. Attorneys Marc P. Lyons and Philip M. Snyder understand how to effectively prevent our clients from having to deal with the mandatory jail sentence, probation, and anger management classes that accompany a domestic violence conviction.
If you were wrongly accused of a crime you did not commit, you must act quickly to retain an attorney with experience handling domestic violence cases who can effectively advocate on your behalf. Bottom line: our domestic violence attorneys get results!
Contact the Fort Lauderdale domestic violence attorneys at Lyons, Snyder & Collin 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 954.462.8035 for your free consultation.