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Articles Posted in Attempted Murder

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The good news is that overall crime is down in Flagler County, but the bad news is that violent crime is up in many categories.

According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Uniform Crime Report, the rates of rape, aggravated assault, burglaries and stolen vehicles all increase in 2015. There was also one murder in the county, up from zero in 2014.

Flagler County’s sheriff says his deputies have managed to keep the crime rate low for a long time. And despite increases in key categories, the overall crime rate is still down .6 percent.

The increase has been blamed on population growth. In the last four years, the county’s population has grown by about 10 percent.

The sheriff said whenever they start to see a spike in crime in specific areas, they flood the zones with patrols.

Statewide, crime is also up in several categories, although overall crime is down 1.6 percent.

In 2015, the crime rates rose in the following categories:

  • Murder: 5.7 percent
  • Rape: 6.1 percent
  • Fondling: 2.0 percent
  • Aggravated Assault: 3.9 percent
  • Motor vehicle Theft: 12.4 percent

The report also breaks down domestic violence-related crime by category. Overall, domestic violence-related crime is up .5 percent.

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A Naples man was charged Monday with attempted murder and armed robbery after he allegedly  stole prescription drugs over the weekend from a pharmacist he left in critical condition.

The 25-year-old man was arrested at 2 p.m. at the Clarion Hotel in Tampa, according to police reports. He is facing additional charges, including occupied armed burglary and three other counts of burglary.

According to Temple Terrace police, the man entered a shopping center at 11410 N 56th St. on Saturday through the back of a nearby business. Shortly before 8 p.m., police claim he climbed through a crawl space in the ceiling to get to Omega Drugs Pharmacy.

hole punhcerThe man allegedly attacked the pharmacist on duty from behind and struck him with a commercial hole-punch machine several times. The man exited the store with a small amount of prescription drugs. The pharmacist, a 59-year-old Wesley Chapel man, remains in critical condition at Tampa General Hospital.

The accused had apparently been working in Ybor City with a painting company based out of  Naples. On Monday, police claim he was involved in a hit-and-run accident with his company vehicle. Following the accident, he allegedly boarded a Hillsborough Area Regional Transit bus where he apparently told another passenger about a mark on his face that was from being “bitten by a pharmacist.”

The man borrowed that same passenger’s cellphone to make a call. The passenger contacted authorities and a trail was led back to the man at the Clarion Hotel.

The man was booked in to the Orient Road jail.

The state of Florida classifies the crime of armed robbery as taking another person’s property without their permission, while possessing a weapon at the same time of the robbery. A weapon can be a knife, gun or other type of deadly weapon. Armed robbery is charged as a first-degree felony carrying very serious consequences if convicted.

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The Levy County Sheriff’s Office recently arrested a 58-year-old Inglis man for attempted first-degree murder and arson after he allegedly tried to set his girlfriend on fire and ultimately burned his house down.

Deputies responded to the Inglis home after receiving a phone call from the man’s girlfriend. She claims the man came home from the bar intoxicated and they began to argue in the living room of the home.

At some point, deputies believe the man poured rubbing alcohol on the woman and the floor next to her and attempted to set both on fire with a lighter. However, the man could not ignite the woman or the floor.

744470_fire_5.jpgAccording to reports, the man proceeded to enter the bedroom and destroy it. He allegedly ignited the mattress and fled the house, locking the door behind him so his girlfriend could not escape. She apparently hid in the bathroom.

The girlfriend eventually freed herself from the home by removing the key the man left inside the lock.

The home was not able to be saved by fire personnel and was written off as a complete loss.

Police located the man on the property and took him into custody. He was taken to the Levy County Detention Center with bail set at $2 million.

The State of Florida views attempted murder charges the same way as a murder case – quite seriously. Judges and prosecutors consider it irrelevant that the alleged victim survived the incident, and feel that attempting to commit a crime is still a crime that should carry serious consequences. The penalties associated with any violent crime, such as attempted murder, are quite severe. Whether you have been charged with attempted first-degree murder or attempted second-degree murder, a Levy County Criminal Defense Attorney at Whittel & Melton can help you through this difficult time.

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A 21-year-old mother was placed under arrest after police claim she strangled her 11-month-old daughter six times at Florida Hospital South in Orlando, Florida.

The girl was apparently unresponsive, but was saved by hospital staff.

It was not clear why the mother and daughter were at the hospital.

The woman was charged with six counts of attempted homicide and is currently being held without bond at the Orange County Jail.

This case is still in the investigation phases and the charges against the woman could change. When facing attempted homicide charges, it is essential to seek the advice and counsel of a Florida Criminal Defense Attorney. It is never in your best interest to take criminal matters into your own hands, as the legal process is not always favorable towards unrepresented defendants. The Florida Criminal Defense Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can discuss the facts of your case with you and further develop any relevant defenses or justifications to attain the best possible outcome regarding your criminal matter.

The crime of attempted murder is considered one of the most heinous crimes a person can commit against another individual. Being accused of attempted homicide can cause the public and members of the jury to view your character as unsympathetic. An experienced criminal defense attorney can gather appropriate evidence, interview witnesses, ensure you are treated justly and do whatever it takes to make sure your side of the story is heard.

While the details of this case are still unraveling, prosecutors and judges tend to view the fact that a victim survived as irrelevant. These cases are prosecuted aggressively, which is why it is so important to combat these serious charges early on with a vigorous defense strategy.
Attempted homicide charges can vary in degree, depending upon premeditation or planning and the severity of the crime. For someone to be convicted of attempted homicide, or attempted murder, the prosecution must show that the accused took action towards committing murder as well as the intent behind it. Because of this, it can be argued that attempted murder is more difficult to prosecute than murder. Regardless of how challenging it may be for the prosecution to prove, it is in your best interest to contact the Florida Criminal Defense Lawyers at Whittel & Melton immediately if you or someone you know has been charged with attempted homicide.

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A Florida Ave Maria law school student is being held on $1 million bond after police claim he supposedly pointed a gun at his ex-girlfriend and fired shots at his roommate.

The 25-year-old student was charged Friday with attempted murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

According to the Naples Daily News, the man allegedly forced his roommate and ex-girlfriend to their knees on the street while pointing a gun at them. The woman apparently ran to the apartment to call the police, while the man fired several shots in the air.

The man allegedly ordered the roommate to his feet while pointing the gun at him. According to reports, no one was injured.

The man is scheduled to make his next court appearance on Feb. 6.

Aggravated assault can be defined as the use of intentional force that puts another individual in fear of impending danger. Certain circumstances can elevate this crime to be considered aggravated including:

 Use of a deadly weapon
 Assault against a family member or relative
 Assault against a police officer
 Assault that results in serious bodily injury
The use of a deadly weapon is not limited to a gun, and may include any type of instrument capable of bringing about serious bodily injury or harm. In the State of Florida, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon is a third-degree felony carrying consequences of up to five years in prison. However, if a person is charged with aggravated assault with a firearm a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison must be enforced.

For an aggravated assault with a deadly weapon charge, the State does not have to prove that you harmed another person or that you even made physical contact with the person. If it can be shown that you had the ability and the intent to inflict harm on another person, then you can be charged with this crime. In fact, simply threatening someone with a dangerous device, with an apparent ability to carry out the threat, can result in an aggravated assault arrest.

The Florida Aggravated Assault Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton work with investigators and related experts to exhaust all probable defenses to get your aggravated assault charges dismissed. There are numerous defenses that may be grounds for challenging the accusations including self-defense, provocation, defense of your property and defense of a third person. In addition, any faults with evidence must be exposed. Our attorneys can work to uncover any unlawful search and seizure issues as well as any conflicts with evidence or witness testimony.

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Nearly 100 yards from where a Brooksville, Florida woman was bludgeoned to death about a month ago, investigators shot a man in the abdomen.

Five investigators approached the 60-year-old man’s home on Sept. 27 with a search warrant in tow when the man allegedly opened the door and tossed a flaming Molotov cocktail at the deputies and began firing a nail gun at them.

The man was taken to the hospital where he is expected to recover. No deputies were injured by the flames or nails.

The man shot is the father-in-law of a woman who was killed less than a block from his home on Sept. 16. The man is a person of interest in the homicide investigation.

After the alleged firebomb attack, the man was charged with five counts of attempted first-degree murder of a law enforcement officer and three counts of throwing a destructive device with intent to harm a person.

According to the St. Petersburg Times, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting. The deputy who fired the shots was placed on administrative leave with pay, which is customary in all shootings that involve a deputy. The four other deputies on the scene supposedly did not fire.

While this man is expected to recover quickly from gunshot wounds, he does face some serious criminal charges that will require the assistance of an experienced criminal trial lawyer from start to finish. In the state of Florida, crimes of violence often carry the stiffest penalties. Since the charges involve law enforcement officers, the man could face a lengthy prison term and a mandatory minimum sentence could be imposed. Moreover, when attempted murder cases involve police officers the State can be more difficult to negotiate with because they tend to be very protective of police, especially if they are wounded.

A person can be charged with attempted murder if that person took steps towards an unlawful killing and had the intent to kill another person. Basically, a prosecutor must prove that the accused had the intent to kill. An Attempted murder conviction carries a maximum penalty of life in prison with the possibility of parole. In situations like these, many times charges are filed for attempted first degree murder when a lesser charge, like assault, is more appropriate. If a prosecutor cannot establish intent, you cannot be convicted of attempted murder.

Additionally, Florida law is very strict about cases that involve weapons. Significant penalties can be enforced for merely possessing a weapon. Oftentimes in criminal cases, a strong defense can evoke reduced penalties, lesser charges or a possible dismissal of all charges. Even if evidence seems to point to overwhelming guilt, a proper demonstration of mitigating circumstances prepared by the Florida Criminal Defense Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can lead to significant decreases in penalties.

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A Zephyrhills, Florida man is being sought on a charge of attempted second-degree murder by the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office for his supposed involvement in an alleged playground shooting in Wesley Chapel. This marks the third shooting to occur in the Wesley Chapel, FL area within about a week.

According to investigators, the 30-year-old man allegedly shot a 20-year-old in the stomach after the pair met at a community playground on June 28 for a prescription drug deal. The victim suffered wounds to his abdomen.

The man sought was arrested earlier last month for a marijuana charge and was released the following day after posting bond. Records show the man served prison time for cocaine and grand theft charges.

A day before the playground shooting occurred, a Wesley Chapel man was shot in the face while allegedly selling prescription medications from his house. A masked man supposedly entered the man’s home and shot him; the man’s injuries were not believed to be life-threatening. No arrests have been made regarding this incident, reports show.

In another shooting that occurred on June 21, a 29-year-old man has been arrested and charged with attempted second-degree murder and aggravated assault. The man allegedly shot three rounds at a moving vehicle after an argument took place at a neighborhood basketball court. His bail was set at $350,000.

Attempted second-degree murder is a serious offense; along with hefty time behind bars you could have an attempted murder conviction on your record. In the state of Florida, attempted second-degree murder is considered a second-degree felony that carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. However, if a firearm is used in the charge of an attempted second-degree murder, the penalties increase drastically. A gun escalates the charge to a first-degree felony punishable by a maximum of 30 years in state prison if the gun is discharged. This includes a mandatory minimum of 20 years in prison under Florida’s 10-20-Life.

Attempted second-degree murder can be difficult for the State to prove all the elements associated with the crime, which makes some cases very defensible. To prove the crime, the prosecution must show the actions of the accused were dangerous enough to cause the death of another, not that the accused had the intent to kill. In many scenarios attempted second-degree murder is overcharged; the experienced Criminal Defense Lawyers at Whittel & Melton will work to lower your charge. Some cases can be reduced to aggravated assault or misdemeanor battery. The facts of every case are different.

Remember self-defense laws can apply and protect you from an attempted second-degree murder charge. Florida’s law of Stand Your Ground says that you have the right to protect your life or the life of another if you have the reasonably belief either is in danger. This can include using lethal force if you feel you have no other way of protecting yourself or another.

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