August 7, 2017

Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law

Stand Your Ground is changing and has recently been the subject of great debate because the Florida Legislature and the Florida Courts are battling it out. As a basic procedural principal, in a criminal trial, the State of Florida (the prosecution) must prove every element of the alleged crime beyond a reasonable doubt. Prior to the recent changes, if a defendant raised the affirmative defense of self-defense by standing his ground (he or she claims to have had no alternative but to use deadly force to defend him or herself), the defendant had to prove self-defense was reasonable, necessary, and […]
July 12, 2017

5 Things We Can Learn From Celebrity DUI Cases

5 Things We Can Learn From Celebrity DUI Cases Celebrities are constantly in the news, but sometimes it can be for all of the wrong reasons. We’ve all seen the occasional mugshot floating around after an arrest of a high-profile individual. There is a lot we can learn from celebrities who have been arrested or charged with a DUI.   In Florida, your mugshot is public record. In Florida, if you are arrested your mugshot is instantly public record. Just ask Tiger Woods. This means that your mugshot can be accessed by anyone. Hopefully in the future if your record […]
July 6, 2017
Rob Kardashian Revenge Porn Cyber Harassment

Did Rob Kardashian Commit a Criminal Act By Releasing Explicit Images of Ex Blac Chyna?

Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images On Wednesday, Rob Kardashian posted some sexually explicit photographs of his ex, Blac Chyna, on Instagram. These actions could carry steep consequences for him. This type of conduct, where an individual deliberately distributes sexually explicit material of an ex or spouse without that person’s consent, is commonly referred to as “Revenge Porn.” Many people are wondering if Kardashian could now be facing criminal charges for distributing these illicit images to his massive audience of over 8.9 million Instagram followers. In the state of California, Revenge Porn is considered a criminal act, a misdemeanor punishable by up to […]
June 20, 2017
Orlando Criminal Defense Lawyer

New Law Allows For Individuals With Sealed Records To Have Mugshots Removed

Florida Governor Rick Scott just signed a bill on Friday that will allow individuals with sealed records to have their mugshot removed from websites without having to pay a fee. The bill takes effect on July 1, 2018. As a criminal defense attorney, I believe the legislature made the right decision by enacting this law. In fact, the legislature also allowed for a $1,000 per day penalty (that goes to the general revenue fund) for those websites who don’t comply with the new law. The process to have your mugshot removed from one these websites that typically charges a fee […]
June 16, 2017

Marijuana and Airports

On a recent trip to Denver I stood in a long line waiting to get through security. I saw person after person put their carry-on through the x-ray machine and then walk through the full body scanner. What came to mind is the fact that Colorado legalized recreational marijuana, yet no person that I saw was stopped for bringing marijuana through security.  Which made me think either people aren’t doing it, TSA doesn’t catch it or TSA doesn’t care.   This was just my observation so that’s when I began to do a little research on what is going on at […]
June 15, 2017

Florida Retirement System and Divorce

As a Former State Attorney, I was employed by the State of Florida. As someone who had a Florida Retirement System(FRS) plan, I know choosing between drop or the investment plans can be a big decision. But what happens to your retirement if you’re a state employee going through a divorce? Your spouse will likely file what is called a QDRO (Qualified Domestic Relations Order). It’s an order by the court that recognizes spouses to receive all or part of your account. The general requirements for QDRO are that is must be signed by the court. It must identify the […]
May 23, 2017

Is “Stealthing” Currently a Crime in Florida?

Stealthing is loosely defined as the act of a man taking off the condom during sexual intercourse without the knowledge of the partner. Stealthing is a phenomenon that has recently hit the news cycle because of a study that looked its prevalence in the Columbia Journal of Gender and Law. An Appeals Court in Switzerland found it not be rape but defilement.  And Law makers in Wisconsin and California proposed legislation to make it a crime. But is it currently a crime in Florida? Rape is essentially the crime of sexual battery and defined as the penetration or union of a sexual organ […]
May 18, 2017

Criminal Law Legislation Update May 18, 2017

Florida House and Senate Pass Bill to Help Utility Companies Get Restitution The House and Senate have passed a bill that will make it easier for utility companies get restitution on criminal cases. When I worked at the State, I often had what’s called “grow house cases”.  These are cases where the accused has allegedly tampered with a meter of a house to get electricity but not be charged for it. The electricity was then being used for lamps to grow marijuana inside the house.  These lamps would easily exhaust thousands of dollars in electricity. Because there was no longer a working meter, determining […]
May 7, 2017
Carfentanil Drug Trafficking

Carfentanil: Just Breathing It Could Kill You

The newest drug on the street is Carfentanil. Carfentanil is an Opiod that is intended for use on Elephants. It is 10,000 times more potent than Morphine and 100 times  more potent than Fentanyl. Carfentanil is so deadly that first responders are having to take precautions in responding to overdoses to prevent them from inhaling it. Last week the Florida Legislature passed a bill that made Drug Trafficking in Fentanyl illegal. In that bill they included Carfentanil. Carfentanil is a derivative of Fentanyl. While Carfentanil is supposed to be difficult to obtain, it is currently coming in predominantly from China. In reviewing House Bill […]
May 7, 2017
Fentanyl Drug Trafficking

Florida Passes Fentanyl Drug Trafficking Legislation

On May 5, 2017 the Florida legislature passed a bill which adds penalties for Drug Trafficking in Fentanyl.  The bill lays out that anyone who “knowingly sells, purchases, manufactures, delivers, or brings into this state, or who is knowingly in actual or constructive possession” of at least four but less than 14 grams, the mandatory minimum prison term would be three years, plus a $50,000 fine. For at least 14 but less than 28 grams, the mandatory minimum prison term would be seven years, plus a $100,000 fine. For at least 28 grams but less than 30 kilograms, the mandatory […]