If your child has been arrested or accused of committing an assault in violation of Florida Statute 784.011 or a battery in violation of Florida statute 784.03 they will need an experienced attorney looking out for them. At the law office of Finebloom & Haenel we can represent your child and assist them in fighting these accusations. We are also available to represent your child for more serious assault and battery charges such as:
- Aggravated battery charged as a violation of Florida statute 784.045;
- Battery on a law enforcement officer which is a violation of Florida statute 784.07;
- Aggravated assault under Florida statute 784.021; or
- Assault on a school official in violation of Florida statute 784.081
In general, a battery is proven by showing you touched someone against his or her will. An assault is proven when the State shows someone was in imminent fear that you were about to touch them against their will. If you use a weapon, then the charge is considered aggravated. If you commit an assault or battery and the victim is a cop or a school employee, then there is a separate charge for that and it is considered more serious.
When a child is arrested for an assault or battery charge, they are taken for an intake assessment at the Department of Juvenile Justice (Also called “DJJ”). DJJ has officers on staff that evaluate the child to determine:
- The severity of the crime
- If the crime was the child’s first
- Support systems in place for the child (such as does he have a parent or guardian willing to take care of them)
- The risk the child poses if released
The assessment results are listed in a scoresheet that is provided to the court.
If the assessment shows that the child should be released to “home detention” the child is released. Home detention is basically like house arrest for adults. But there must be a parent or guardian willing to take responsibility for the child.
If the assessment shows that the child should not be released, the child is taken to “secure detention.” This is the equivalent of adult jail. However, all of the people detained are children.
A juvenile case is usually resolved in 21 days unless the child or the attorney asks for an extension. So a child’s arraignment date is usually held within a week. At that point the child can plea guilty or not guilty.
If they plea guilty the case goes to “disposition.” Which is the term used for the juvenile’s sentencing hearing.
If they plea “not-guilty” the case goes to an “adjudicatory hearing.” This is the term used for a trial. However, juveniles are not entitled to a jury trial. All cases are heard in front of a judge.
If the child either pleas guilty to the charge, or if they are found to be guilty of the charge the case goes to the next phase which is the disposition hearing. This is the sentencing phase. Again, a scoresheet is used. The child can either be adjudicated delinquent or have delinquency withheld.
Then, depending on the recommendation from DJJ, the child will either be sentenced to a diversion program (such as teen court), placed on probation, or sent to a residential program. Residential programs have different levels of strictness to meet the needs of the child.
Assault or battery charges can lead to expulsion form school, inability to participate in extra curricular activities and can keep your child from attending some universities. It can also affect their ability to obtain future financial aid. Because assault and battery are crimes of violence, the state can choose to charge a child 16 or older as an adult if the crime is really bad, or if they have an long juvenile history.
These charges can have a severe impact on your child’s life!! Don’t leave their fate to chance.
Call the aggressive attorneys of Finebloom & Haenel, we are available 24/7 to help you help your child. Our experienced team of attorneys will fight aggressively and compassionately to protect your child’s rights. We work hard to ensure each client obtains the best possible outcome for their unique situation. Don’t wait! Call Finebloom & Haenel now at 407-218-6277.