• Child Pornography

    • What Is Considered Child Pornography in Florida?

      Child pornography is defined by Florida Statute 827.071 as any written or visual material that includes graphic descriptions of sexual conduct involving minors, as well as any image that shows a youngster engaged in sexual activity. Actual or simulated sexual activity, sexual bestiality, sexual sadism, and sexual masochism are all considered forms of sexual conduct.

      In Florida, some instances of child pornography could be:

      • Images
      • Movies and recordings
      • Pictures kept on a PC or other electronic device
      • Text in writing

      Because child pornography is a "sexually violent offense" in Florida, offenders are required to register as sexual predators under Florida Statute 775.21. You face extremely significant consequences if you are arrested for having or distributing child pornography.

    • What Are the Penalties for Possessing Child Pornography in Florida?

      Possession of child pornography is a crime in Florida, carrying a maximum sentence of five years in jail and a $5,000 fine. The severity of the penalty increases if the child pornography you owned featured a youngster under the age of twelve.

      The following are the penalties for having child pornography on one's person that features a child under the age of twelve:

      • First offense: felony carrying a maximum sentence of 15 years in jail and a $10,000 fine
      • Second offense: felony carrying a maximum sentence of 30 years in jail and a $10,000 fine
      • Third and subsequent offenses: are felonies, which carry a maximum sentence of 30 years in jail and a $10,000 fine.
    • Are There Any Defenses to Child Pornography Charges?

      There are several defenses to child pornography charges that our Jacksonville child pornography lawyer can pursue on your behalf. Some of these defenses include:

      • The material was mistakenly or inadvertently downloaded
      • The material was not sexually explicit
      • The material was protected free speech
      • The police illegally searched and seized your property
    • How Does a Criminal Defense Attorney in Jacksonville Defend Against Child Pornography Charges?

      Our Jacksonville child pornography attorney will thoroughly investigate your case and explore all possible defense strategies. We will work closely with you to develop a personalized and comprehensive defense strategy that is tailored to your specific case.

      Our criminal defense attorney in Jacksonville may be able to use the following defense strategies in your case:

      • Challenging the evidence: The attorney may scrutinize the prosecution's evidence, including the method of obtaining it, the chain of custody, and any potential issues with the technology used to collect or analyze the data.
      • Fourth Amendment violations: If the evidence was obtained through an illegal search and seizure, the defense attorney may argue that the defendant's constitutional rights were violated, potentially leading to the exclusion of the evidence.
      • Lack of knowledge or intent: The defense attorney may argue that the defendant was unaware of the presence of child pornography on their device or that they did not have the intent to possess or distribute it.
      • Entrapment or misconduct: If law enforcement engaged in entrapment or misconduct during the investigation, the defense attorney may raise this as a defense strategy.
      • Expert testimony: Defense attorneys may call upon experts in digital forensics, computer science, or psychology to challenge the credibility and reliability of the prosecution's evidence or provide alternative explanations for the presence of child pornography on the defendant's device.
  • Ways to Fight a DUI Charge

    • 1. The Stop’s Legality

      A Jacksonville police officer cannot randomly pull over any car they want to unless it’s a designated sobriety checkpoint. They need to have a credible reason to believe the driver is intoxicated or at least in violation of another law. If a driver rolled through a stop sign too casually or allowed their vehicle to cross the center line, that would qualify as reasonable suspicion.

      The legal standard for reasonable suspicion is not high, and it’s possible that the stop was legal. But it’s important for defense counsel to at least challenge the state to produce its reasons for even making the stop to begin with.

    • 2. The Test’s Legality

      Even if the stop is legal, the decision to call for a BAC-level test may not be. A Jacksonville officer must still have probable cause to issue the test. If a driver is slurring their speech or stumbling, that can qualify. Open containers in the vehicle can make a test legitimate. But, there has to be a reason, and it bears noting that the officer’s burden of proof at this level will be a little bit higher than it was when making the stop.

      Perhaps the officer’s probable cause comes from the driver failing a field test—those drills where the police make a person extend their arm and touch their nose and do other activities to test coordination. These tests must be recorded by the officer’s dashboard video and are subject to review by defense counsel.

      What if a person had to undertake the test in rainy conditions or on an uneven surface? What if the person simply struggles with their coordination? The decision as to whether someone “failed” this test is highly subjective, and a Jacksonville DUI defense attorney can contest the officer’s basis for probable cause.

    • 3. The Breath Test

      Let’s say both the stop and the decision to take the driver’s BAC level were legitimate. There are still options for the defense. The BAC level that the breathalyzer machine may show isn’t as infallible as some people think. There are a lot of reasons a breath test can come back inaccurately high. 

      Here are just a few reasons why a breath test may be off: 

      • The driver consumed sugar or bread along with their alcohol. Is it really difficult to imagine having cake with a glass of wine? Or pretzels along with a beer? Those food products can result in deceptively high BAC levels. 
      • The driver consumes certain types of medication. It can be something as basic as mouthwash that results in a non-intoxicated driver being wrongly charged. 
      • The driver has a medical condition that the breathalyzer misreads. Diabetes, acid reflux, and heart problems are all common. They also can lead to deceptively high BAC levels. 

      Monroe Law reviews all this and more with our clients so that we can pursue all avenues of defense. Remember, it is only necessary to raise a reasonable doubt in the minds of a judge or jury to get someone acquitted of a DUI charge in Jacksonville. 

    • 4. The Blood Test

      A blood sample is no more perfect than a breath test. To begin with, the needle that draws the blood was quite likely sterilized in alcohol. If this wasn’t done properly, it’s not hard to see how this could lead to a false high on the BAC level.

      The sample must also be stored according to strictly defined protocols, lest the blood ferment too long and the reading be inaccurate. Everyone who handles the sample must document it. It is the responsibility of the police department to produce the necessary documentation that their testing meets all legal requirements. It’s the job of your DUI lawyer in Jacksonville, FL, to challenge the authorities every step of the way.

  • Drug Crimes

    • What Are the Penalties for Drug Crimes in Florida?

      Drug crimes are classified as either misdemeanors or felonies in Florida. The specific charges and penalties you face will depend on the type and amount of drug involved, as well as the specific circumstances of your case.

      Drug crimes in Florida are classified as follows:

      • First-degree misdemeanor: Possession of fewer than 20 grams of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, and the sale of drug paraphernalia
      • Third-degree felony: Possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana, possession of a controlled substance, and the sale of a controlled substance
      • Second-degree felony: Possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell, the sale of a controlled substance within 1,000 feet of a school, and the sale of a controlled substance to a minor
      • First-degree felony: Trafficking a controlled substance, the sale of a controlled substance resulting in serious bodily injury or death, and the sale of a controlled substance within 1,000 feet of a college

      Penalties for drug crimes in Florida include:

      • Fines
      • Probation
      • Community service
      • Drug counseling
      • Driver's license suspension
      • Drug testing
      • House arrest
      • Restitution
      • Forfeiture of property
      • Jail or prison time

      Additionally, a drug crime conviction will go on your permanent criminal record, which can make it difficult to find employment, housing, and even obtain certain professional licenses. If you are a non-U.S. citizen, a drug crime conviction can also lead to deportation.

    • How Can a Drug Crime Lawyer Help?

      Being charged with a drug crime can be incredibly stressful. You may be unsure of what to do next or how to protect your rights. That's where we come in. At Monroe Law, P.A., we are committed to providing you with the aggressive, personalized legal representation you need and deserve. We will work with you to understand your unique situation and develop a strong defense strategy tailored to your goals.

      Our drug crime attorney in Jacksonville can help you by:

      • Conducting a thorough investigation into your case, including reviewing the evidence against you and ensuring your rights were not violated
      • Exploring all possible defense strategies and determining the best course of action
      • Representing you in all hearings and court proceedings
      • Working to get your charges reduced or dismissed
      • Protecting your rights and fighting for your best interests at all times
      • Answering your questions and addressing your concerns throughout the legal process

      When you choose Monroe Law, P.A., you can be confident that you will receive the one-on-one attention you deserve. Our drug crime lawyer in Jacksonville is available to take your call 24/7 and can even meet with you on the weekend or after hours, by appointment. We are here to help you navigate the Florida criminal justice system and will fight tirelessly for you every step of the way.

  • Domestic Violence

    • What Is Considered a Domestic Violence Charge in Florida?

      In Florida, domestic violence is legally defined as any of the following acts committed by one family or household member against another:

      • Assault
      • Aggravated assault
      • Battery
      • Aggravated battery
      • Sexual assault
      • Sexual battery
      • Stalking
      • Aggravated stalking
      • Kidnapping
      • False imprisonment
      • Any criminal offense that results in physical injury or death of a family or household member by another family or household member.

      This can include alleged abuse between a spouse, ex-spouse, current or former live-in partner, a parent of a child in common, or anyone else related by blood or marriage. It can also include anyone who is or has been in a dating relationship with the defendant.

    • What If I Have Not Been Formally Charged with Domestic Violence?

      Even if you are never formally charged with domestic violence, you may still face serious consequences without the help of a lawyer. 

      For example, if you were involved in a domestic dispute, you may have been served with a restraining order that prevents you from contacting your accuser. Being served with a restraining order is a serious and immediate problem that requires immediate attention.

    • What Are the Penalties for Domestic Violence in Florida?

      Under Florida Statute § 741.28, the penalties for a domestic violence conviction include:

      • A misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500
      • A misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000
      • A felony of the third degree, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000
      • A felony of the second degree, punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000
      • A felony of the first degree, punishable by up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000

      As a result of the domestic nature of the offense, individuals convicted of domestic battery will also be subject to heightened mandatory penalties as outlined in Chapter 741 of the Florida Statutes. 

      These additional consequences may include:

      1. Completion of a 26-week Batterer’s Intervention Program (BIP).
      2. Additional community service requirements.
      3. The forfeiture of important civil liberties, including the right to carry a concealed weapon.
      4. The issuance of an injunction or 'no-contact' order. 
    • Can I Be Arrested for Domestic Violence If I Never Got Charged?

      You may have been involved in a domestic dispute, and your accuser may have been served with a restraining order against you. A restraining order is a court order that prevents you from contacting your accuser and entering the residence or workplace where they live or work.

      If you violate a restraining order, you can be arrested and charged with a crime. The crime you are charged with will depend on the circumstances of the violation. For example, if you violated the restraining order by contacting your accuser by phone, you can be charged with a misdemeanor of the first degree.

      If you violated the restraining order by physically hurting your accuser, you can be charged with a felony of the third degree.

      Contact our Jacksonville domestic violence lawyers today to make sure you are protected and have the best possible defense on your side, no matter the details surrounding your situation.