Articles Posted in Domestic Violence

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According to a police report made public on Tuesday, Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Zay Jones got into a fight over custody with his child’s mother and allegedly scratched her neck with his fingernails.

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office redacted certain parts of the report.

Deputies were told by the woman that she was spending Monday with Jones and his family when Jones became irate when she mentioned returning their child back to Orlando.

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The mother of Backstreet Boys singer Nick Carter and recently deceased Aaron Carter wound up in the Hernando County Jail following a fight with her husband over a television remote, according to TMZ.

After drinking with an adult family member and getting into a verbal fight that turned physical, the woman was taken into custody on Friday night for domestic violence.

According to TMZ, the woman and her husband got into an argument because she was watching television while playing music so loudly that he could not fall asleep.

The woman allegedly grabbed the man’s wrist when he brought out his phone to record the event, according to sources quoted by TMZ. He then dialed law enforcement at that time.

Deputies allegedly detained the woman after viewing the video captured on the man’s phone.

According to jail records, the woman was arrested early on Saturday and released the same day after paying a $100 bond.

According to TMZ, her husband was unharmed during the argument and refused to be taken to the hospital.

Untitled-design-28-200x300Domestic battery is an accusation that should not be taken lightly. If you are found guilty of domestic violence charges in Florida, you could be sentenced to jail time, fines, and other consequences that will have a detrimental impact on your future.

If you are accused of domestic abuse in Florida, you need a defense attorney who will take the time to hear you out and investigate your case. It is particularly tough for people accused of committing these crimes because prosecutors and judges often seek severe sentences for crimes of violence.

Causing harm to anyone residing in the same household can technically lead to domestic battery charges. A domestic violence charge can be brought against any type of household member, such as roommates, unmarried couples, adopted children, or foster children; the parties in these types of situations do not always need to be blood relatives or married.

Other types of family/household members may include:

  • Spouse
  • Former spouse
  • Parents who share a child together
  • Children
  • Stepchildren
  • Individuals who share a common dwelling (roommates, housemates)
  • Individuals who are dating/engaged
  • Individuals with disabilities and their caregivers

Domestic battery charges can arise from the following types of actions:

  • Causing bodily harm to a family or household member
  • Any physical contact that provokes a household member
  • Making threats
  • Sexual abuse
  • Verbal harassment
  • Emotional abuse
  • Child abuse
  • Child neglect

Can Domestic Battery Charges Be Dropped In the state of Florida?

Once law enforcement takes their initial report of domestic violence, the case is then transferred to the court. The victim cannot recant their accusations once they have been made to police. The only persona that has the power to drop domestic battery charges is the State Attorney. Of course, having a Spring Hill Criminal Defense Attorney fighting for your case can help positively influence the outcome of your specific case. Continue reading

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technology-2500010_640-150x150The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a murder-suicide that happened last Friday morning.

According to Hernando County Sheriff Al Nienhuis, the incident happened at a home located on Dunkirk Road around 10:00 a.m. on Friday, April 10.

The sheriff’s office said they received a 911 call from a woman who was initially out of town. They said the woman received a suicidal text from a person living in the home.

The individual was identified as a 43-year-old man.

Prior to calling law enforcement, the woman drove back to the residence where she found the home on fire. She saw at least one dead individual inside the home before exiting.

The Hernando County Fire Rescue entered the home where they found three dead individuals inside.

The fire was confined to one particular area of the home and was extinguished quickly.

The man, along with a boy and a girl, were found dead.

The preliminary investigation reveals that the man committed suicide after killing the two children.

The Medical Examiner’s Office and the Fire Marshal’s Office responded to assist with the investigation.

Officials said records show there was one previous call at the home on March 22 in regards to a verbal disturbance.

The investigation remains active at this time.

During the news conference, Nienhuis stressed the importance of people knowing where to call if they are struggling with matters.

One of the children was an elementary school student and the other child was in middle school. 

If you, or someone you know, is struggling call:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:


National Domestic Violence Hotline:


When most people hear of domestic violence (also known as “DV”) cases, they think of a male figure with an anger management problem who routinely puts his wife and kids in the hospital whenever there is an argument. The reality of DV cases is very different. Domestic violence accusations can come about from really any situation, from heated arguments to child custody cases to both parties being under the influence of alcohol or drugs. 

Due to these cases being severely emotionally charged, prosecutors and the courts are notorious for doling out strict penalties for those accused and charged with domestic violence. The penalties for a domestic violence charge can be absolutely devastating. Domestic violence or domestic battery in Florida is classified as a first-degree misdemeanor, with penalties that may include up to one year in jail or twelve months probation, and a $1,000 fine. Because of the ‘domestic’ nature of the crime, those convicted will face additional mandatory penalties under Chapter 741, Florida Statutes, including:

  • Completion of a 26 week Batterer’s Intervention Program (BIP)
  • 12 months of probation
  • 5 days required jail (if the defendant is adjudicated guilty and there is bodily injury)
  • Additional community service hours
  • Loss of important civil liberties, including concealed carry rights
  • Imposition of an injunction or ‘no contact’ order

Domestic violence is a unique form of violence that occurs between two individuals with a special relationship. Domestic violence charges can be applied when the victim is any of the following:

  • Spouses
  • Former spouses
  • Co-parents
  • Family members
  • Children
  • Roommates
  • Intimate partners

Domestic violence is a group of offenses that include:

  • Certain battery charges
  • Domestic battery
  • Certain homicide charges
  • Invasion of property
  • Stalking
  • Kidnapping
  • Strangulation charges
  • Neglect and abuse
  • Sexual abuse

Domestic violence charges can also arise from certain emotional and/or psychological abuse. Some examples of emotional abuse are:

  • Threatening to harm victim
  • Hurting a pet
  • Name-calling
  • Intimidation
  • Manipulation of words and family members
  • Making fun of victim
  • Ignoring
  • Disrespecting friends and family
  • Isolation of the victim
  • Cheating
  • Monitoring phone calls, texts, emails, and social media

When a domestic violence incident results in death, the accused can be charged with homicide, including murder, voluntary manslaughter, and involuntary manslaughter. A murder from a domestic violence incident occurs when an individual knowingly or intentionally kills a spouse, former spouse, or family member. Voluntary manslaughter would be if the death was carried out in the heat of passion. Involuntary manslaughter is when a crime of battery eventually results in death. In Florida, a conviction for a first-degree murder charge is punishable by a sentence of life in prison with no possibility of parole. This can be a capital felony and under certain conditions, the prosecution can push for the death penalty. Voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter are also felonies.

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child-1439468_640-150x150Former Texas Rangers star and 2010 American League MVP Josh Hamilton was indicted on a felony charge for injury to a minor on Monday, according to news reports. 

Hamilton turned himself in to police and was arrested in October for hitting and scratching his daughter.

According to reports, Hamilton told his daughter to tell the judge “what a terrible dad I am” to ensure she would never have to visit his home again. When interviewed by Child Protective Services, his daughter allegedly told the interviewer that Hamilton started to assault and throw things at her after she made a comment that upset him, records show. 

The former baseball player is accused of throwing a full water bottle that hit his daughter in the chest. Hamilton then pulled a chair from under his daughter and threw it at her, a warrant says.

Hamilton then allegedly took his daughter to a room, pinned her to a bed and repeatedly hit her on the back and legs, according to an arrest warrant. 

Hamilton has three children and court records show he is accused of assaulting the oldest. His ex-wife has filed for a temporary restraining order on her daughter’s behalf.

Hamilton, 38, hasn’t appeared in the majors since 2015. In addition to the Rangers, he played for the Cincinnati Reds and Los Angeles Angels over parts of a nine-season career. The No. 1 pick in the 1999 draft, Hamilton’s career was delayed by substance abuse and addiction issues. 

What Is Domestic Violence in Florida? 

As defined by law, domestic violence is:

741.28 “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.

“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.

Due to the relationships involved and the complexity of the laws, domestic violence cases are often mentally and emotionally taxing. If you have been accused of a domestic violence crime, you must protect your rights. You will need an experienced criminal defense lawyer to help you fight back against these charges.

Criminal courts in Florida, and throughout the U.S., are extremely tough on domestic violence. Our Domestic Violence and Child Abuse Attorneys at Whittel & Melton are well equipped to handle cases stemming from the area of domestic violence. We know the damage this can cause to your reputation and the strain it can place on your relationship with family members and friends. We want to help you through this difficult time and simplify the legal process for you.

Domestic violence can be many different things, not just physical abuse or violence. Domestic violence can also include sexual abuse, emotional abuse, intimidation, and economic deprivation. Even just the threat of violence or harm can be considered domestic abuse. We have laid out some examples of domestic violence below: 

Physical abuse

  • Striking or hitting
  • Punching or beating
  • Pulling hair 
  • Excessive pushing or throwing a person to the ground
  • Ordering a dog to attack 

Emotional abuse

  • Harassment
  • Threats
  • Verbal criticism and abuse
  • Making someone live in fear for their life or safety
  • Stalking

Sexual abuse

  • Sexual Coercion
  • Inappropriate sexual comments
  • Forced sexual acts or advances
  • Physical Assault
  • Rape

Child Abuse

  • Child Endangerment – this happens when a child witnesses acts of violence
  • Physical child abuse
  • Emotional child abuse
  • Sexual child abuse

When these acts are carried out against a family or household member, they may constitute domestic violence. The following are examples of relationships that may fall under the umbrella of domestic violence:

  • Spouses and ex-spouses
  • Unmarried couples who are parents together
  • Couples who are/were dating
  • Children and stepchildren
  • Parents
  • Roommates
  • In-Home caregivers and their patients

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violence-against-women-4209778_640-150x150Mandatory lockdowns to curb the spread of COVID-19 have trapped people inside their homes, which is causing many to have concern for domestic violence victims who are isolated from the people and the resources that could help them.

In the United States, where 5,218 people have been infected with the coronavirus, the National Domestic Violence Hotline reports that a growing number of callers say that their abusers are using COVID-19 as a means of further isolating them from their friends and family. 

From Europe to Asia, millions of people have been placed under lockdown, as the coronavirus infects more than 183,000 people. As social distancing continues with no known end date, many fear that this creates an opportunity for abusers to unleash more violence.

One out of three women in the world experience physical or sexual violence in their lifetime, according to the World Health Organization. While men experience domestic violence, women make up the majority of victims, with LGBTQ individuals also facing elevated rates of domestic violence. With that said, during times of crisis—which now includes coronavirus—the risk of gender-based-violence escalates. In China, the number of domestic violence cases reported to the local police tripled in February compared to the previous year, according to Axios. Activists believe this is a result of enforced lockdown.

The current crisis also makes it more difficult for victims to seek help. As medical facilities around the world scramble to respond to the coronavirus, health systems are becoming overloaded, which is making it more difficult for victims to get access to medical care or therapists. 

For many women, even the fear of contracting the coronavirus is stopping them from seeking out medical care after experiencing physical abuse. Going to the ER is too terrifying for some as they fear catching COVID-19.

Others fear going to their parents’ home, as they could expose their elderly parents to the virus. For some, travel restrictions may limit their ability to stay with loved ones. Women’s shelters may also be overcrowded during this time or may close their doors if the risk of infection is deemed too high.

Domestic violence organizations like the National Domestic Violence Hotline are developing new strategies to support victims under lockdown. The hotline does offer services via online chat or texting, making it easier for victims to seek out help while at home.

Coronavirus Isolation Can Increase the Number of Domestic Violence Cases in Florida

When families are forced to isolate and steer clear of everything they are used to doing, such as going to work, dropping kids off at school, attending religious services, and even trips to the mall, the aftermath can be devastating. With our current state of coronavirus isolation, this article highlights that we will likely see a rise in domestic violence incidents. 

When someone tests positive for coronavirus, or comes into contact with someone who has coronavirus, they must self-isolate at home for at least 14 days. With many states announcing shelter-in-place orders or bans on non-essential businesses, Florida could be soon to follow. When people who have short tempers are forced to isolate, any friction at home could lead to domestic violence.

Not only are people fearful of the coronavirus, but the uncertainty regarding work and pay has pushed many to their mental health limits. Families are worried about making enough money to pay their bills. Schools have shut down, leaving parents without childcare. Attempting to work from home with bored and loud children coupled with intense financial pressures and no end in sight can easily trigger all sorts of emotions that could lead to incidents of domestic violence.

Coronavirus Isolation and Mental Health 

The fear of the coronavirus pandemic has brought on severe stress and anxiety. Human beings are not designed to undergo constant stress and fear on top of being isolated from others for extended periods of time. As social creatures, our mental health relies on interaction with others in the world around us. 

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The Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Anthony Chickillo was arrested Sunday and charged with assault after a dispute with his girlfriend, according to the NFL website.

The alleged incident occurred at the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington, Pennsylvania, about 60 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, according to Pennsylvania police.

The State Police said they received a domestic disturbance call at 1:40 a.m. on Sunday. What started as an argument between 26-year-old Chickillo and his girlfriend became physical, according to police.

Chickillo “grabbed both arms and forced her against the wall, then threw her on the ground,” according to statements made to the police.

Chickillo was arraigned Sunday and released on a $10,000 unsecured bond. He is charged with simple assault, harassment and criminal mischief, according to court documents.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for October 30.

The girlfriend was given a summary citation, also known as summary harassment, which usually results in nothing but a fine, according to police.

Chickillo was drafted by the Steelers in the sixth round of the 2015 NFL Draft and has played his whole pro career with the team in a reserve role.

He was not present Monday at the Steelers’ practice facility, where the rest of the team was practicing.

Many people who are arrested for domestic violence have no prior criminal record. In the past, law enforcement was able to use their discretion when deciding whether or not to make an arrest when responding to a “domestic violence” call. However, as time has gone on, high profile cases regarding domestic violence and murder have changed the way that police handle domestic violence disputes. Officers are now pretty much required to arrest one or both of the parties when responding to a domestic violence call. For anyone arrested, it is imperative to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney who handles domestic violence cases as soon as possible. Our Florida Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton would prefer to get involved as soon as a person is released or bonds out of jail. Early intervention can make a huge difference in domestic violence cases. 

When police respond to the scene of a domestic violence call, they will typically take statements from the involved parties and document any visible injuries. The officers will try to conclude who the aggressor was and then arrest that person. In some cases, this is not the person who initially called 911. It is not uncommon for both parties involved to be arrested on suspicion of domestic violence.

Regardless of the situation, the accused will be taken to jail and will be required to post bond in order to be released. Even those accused that have no prior criminal records will be required to post bail. If bail is posted and the accused is released, they will be given a future court date for their arraignment. 

The best way to establish a strong defense to any domestic violence charge is to speak with an experienced criminal defense lawyer who has tried and won these types of cases involving jury trials. Domestic violence cases are complex and can be difficult to understand. Every piece of evidence matters in these cases, including the early investigation of witnesses and victim statements and testimony from domestic violence trauma experts. How the story is told and how evidence is relayed is critical for avoiding a conviction. 

Unfortunately, we have seen many people bring false charges against someone for domestic violence. That is why we will work hard to build a case for your innocence and back it up with facts. The sooner we get involved, the sooner we can separate truth from fiction. No facts are unimportant in these cases. We need to know as much information as possible so that we can identify and flaws or weaknesses in the prosecution’s case and determine the best way to move forward. This often entails interviewing witnesses and identifying documents that can be used to back up your version of the story.

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A domestic battery charge filed last weekend against actress and former political commentator Stacey Dash has been dropped.

The Pasco County Clerk & Comptroller posted an update on its website Friday.

According to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, Dash, 52, and a man became involved in an argument just before 8 p.m. on Sunday. Deputies claimed Dash pushed the man and slapped him in the face.

Deputies arrived and took her into custody.

The 5-foot-4, 108-pound star from the 1995 film Clueless owns a home in Pasco County, according to celebrity website TMZ.

Under Florida law, domestic violence or domestic battery is defined as any actual and intentional touching or striking of another person without consent, or the intentional causing of bodily harm to another person, when the person struck is a “family or household member.”

Under Section 741.28, Florida Statutes, the term ‘family or household member’ can include the following:

  • Wives and husbands;
  • Ex-wives and ex-husbands;
  • Individuals related by blood or marriage;
  • Individuals living together as a family;
  • Individuals who have resided together as if a family in the past; and
  • Persons who have a child in common (regardless of prior marriage).

The statute specifically requires that the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit. The only exception is for persons who have a child in common.

Prosecutors make decisions on how to file or proceed with a criminal case based on evidence. The following are a few reasons why the prosecution may choose to drop charges of domestic violence:

Insufficient Evidence

A major reason for dropping any criminal case is due to insufficient evidence. Successfully prosecuting the accused for domestic violence means that the prosecutor must prove each element of the offense by the standard of beyond a reasonable doubt.

The state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused:

  • Intentionally touched or struck the alleged victim against his or her will; or
  • Intentionally caused bodily harm to the alleged victim; or
  • Intentionally and unlawfully threatened, either by word or act, to do violence to the victim and, at the time, appeared to have the ability to carry out the threat; or the act of the defendant created in the mind of the alleged victim a well-founded fear that the violence was about to take place

A prosecutor might feel that the element of “intent” is missing. A prosecutor may also feel the evidence of a domestic battery is insufficient because the alleged victim’s credibility is suspect.The victim may have a history of mental illness, making false accusations in the past, or has a motive to exaggerate or fabricate the incident because the parties are involved in a custody or property distribution battle. Any of these reasons could convince the prosecutor that there is insufficient evidence to convict the accused and result in them not filing charges.

The lack of a serious bodily injury could also result in charges being dropped. A serious bodily injury usually means that the victim suffered an injury necessitating medical treatment or serious impairment of a physical condition. These injuries may include:

  • Broken limb
  • Black eye
  • Laceration or cut requiring stitches
  • Disfigurement
  • Concussion

If a physician testifies that the injuries were not serious, or that the victim was exaggerating the symptoms, then this could compel the prosecutor to reduce or dismiss the charges.

Inconsistent Statements

A prosecutor will review any statements made by the defendant and the alleged victim. In some cases, the alleged victim will make a verbal statement that is different than what they originally said or wrote in their original statement to police. Their version of events could also be inconsistent with their actual physical condition that shows little or no injuries.

A change in the alleged victim’s story or another witness’ story introduces the idea that they are unreliable, have a poor memory, or are just lying. Inconsistencies may include:

  • Why the alleged victim was hit
  • Relationship between the accused and the alleged victim
  • Time of day the incident occurred
  • If any drugs or alcohol was consumed by either party involved
  • Body part struck
  • A change of story or any inconsistencies within the alleged victim’s statement or in other questioning by police

Lack of Injuries

The lack of any visible injuries in no way means that a domestic battery did not occur and the presence of an injury is not required in order for someone to be charged with domestic battery. The prosecution only needs to demonstrate that there is evidence of harmful or offensive touching, which can include pushing or shoving someone, spitting in their face, or intentionally touching them in a violent manner. With that said, however, the lack of any visible injuries may persuade the prosecution to not pursue criminal charges.

Lack of Witnesses

In most domestic violence cases, there are no other witnesses to the incident except for the accused and the alleged victim. If there is little to no evidence of an injury or fight, conflicting statements, and the accused has no record of domestic violence, a prosecutor may not wish to proceed with charges.

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Stacey Dash was arrested for domestic battery after an incident Sunday night in New Port Richey, according to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.

The 52-year-old “Clueless” actress was taken into custody after an argument with a male, whose name was redacted in an incident report obtained by CNN. She is accused of pushing and slapping him.

The report states that police were called to a home Sunday evening “to respond to a domestic dispute” between the two.

According to the report, “The victim sustained red scratch marks to his upper left arm from being pushed.”

Dash was taken into custody and transported to the Land O’ Lakes detention facility without incident. She posted bail and was released on Monday morning, according to a spokesperson for the Pasco County Sheriff.

Prosecutors have become extremely aggressive about pursuing allegations of domestic violence in the state of Florida. While family violence against a spouse, significant other or anyone else with whom one resides is a serious issue, domestic violence allegations are among the most common to be made up, exaggerated or used for an ulterior motive. 

Many Florida domestic violence charges arise out of the context of a marriage or bad family living situation that is deteriorating or a child custody dispute to give one parent leverage against the other. In many of these situations, an ordinary family disagreement is exaggerated by one person who may later try to recant once they have had time to cool down. Unfortunately, Pasco County prosecutors can and often do pursue these cases even when the alleged victim has recanted and does not wish to continue with pressing criminal charges. 

Domestic abuse charges may arise out of a wide range of situations even when there is no actual contact and the alleged victims suffer no actual injury. Acts that may constitute domestic violence include but are not limited to the following:

  • Battery
  • Assault
  • Punching
  • Acts of intimidation or threats of harm
  • An open handed slap
  • Marital rape
  • Punching, shoving or kicking
  • Sexual abuse
  • Biting
  • Choking
  • Strangling

Domestic battery is defined as intentionally causing unwanted touching or striking of another person or causing bodily harm to the person. The difference between a battery charge and a domestic battery charge is the relationship between the defendant and the victim. 

A domestic battery charge can arise when the alleged victim is a family member or household member of the defendant. A family member or household member under Florida law includes wives, husbands, ex-spouses, individuals related by blood or marriage, co-parents even if never married, individuals who live together as a family and individuals who lived together as a family in the past. With the exception of co-parents, one of the required legal elements that must be proven in these cases is that the defendant and victim currently or previously lived together in the same residence.

In the state of Florida, domestic battery is classified as a first degree misdemeanor, with penalties that may include up to one year in jail or twelve months probation, and a $1,000 fine. Prosecutors might rely on minor injuries like bruising or swelling in the neck area to support this aggravated version of the domestic violence offense. Because allegations of choking or grabbing of the throat and neck area are common in domestic violence cases, people sometimes face severe felony charges based on relatively minor signs of injury.

Being convicted of any battery charge, regardless of whether it is domestic violence or not, can cause very serious consequences. A conviction can affect a person’s freedom, livelihood, reputation and finances. Any individuals facing such charges should choose to consult with a criminal defense lawyer who has extensive knowledge and experience with domestic violence cases, aggravated battery, and simple battery charges. Our Pasco County Criminal Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton have handled numerous domestic battery and domestic violence cases, so we know your rights and can go over all of your legal options that may be available to you given the particular circumstances of the case.

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A University of Florida junior cornerback was arrested by Gainesville police Monday and is facing a charge of simple battery/date violence following an alleged altercation with his girlfriend in his apartment.

The man and the woman got into an argument, and as she attempted to leave the apartment, the man apparently grabbed her by the neck to stop her, according to a Gainesville Police Department arrest report. Police claims she had marks on her neck and a scratch on her shoulder.

The man, 20, and the woman have been dating for two years, according to the report. A witness to the incident intervened in an effort to stop the argument and then called 911.

A simple battery charge is a misdemeanor under Florida law.

A battery charge can be emotionally fueled by the alleged victim and the person charged. These arrests usually arise from situations that are personal and highly emotional, and often involve misunderstandings that were blown out of proportion.

If you have been arrested for battery in Gainesville, our Alachua County Criminal Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton are here to help. Possible penalties can include jail time, fines, and a criminal record. We can help you avoid the penalties of a conviction. When possible, we will negotiate for a reduction or a complete dismissal of charges.

Regardless of the events leading up to your arrest, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney to defend your rights against your accuser. We will investigate all of the facts of your case and present your side to prosecutors and in court, when necessary.

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A former Florida lawmaker has been arrested and charged with abusing his wife of 10 years, according to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.

Former Rep. Baxter Troutman, 52, was arrested early Saturday after his wife made multiple domestic violence accusations against him.

According to authorities, the woman said she and her husband had argued about her buying a home in Lakeland in her own name on Wednesday.

She told deputies she left the home for several hours and returned at about 9:30 p.m. to sleep. She told authorities that her husband came into her bedroom at about 4:30 a.m. and pulled the comforter off her bed.

The two had slept in separate bedrooms for several years, she told deputies.

The man apparently came into her room and pulled the comforter off her bed and started shouting expletives at her and then began to play loud heavy metal music on all he TVs around the house.

She told deputies that when she tried to go back to sleep, her husband came into the room again and yanked the comforter off the bed, causing her to fall to the floor. According to the report, he then grabbed her by the chin, pulled her head back and said, “B— get up.”

The woman told deputies she used her cell phone to record how loud the music was playing on the TVs. She then went back to her room and used a chair to block the door.

Deputies said that she also told them previous instances of domestic violence. She told authorities that in 2018, her husband hit her in the face when she refused to give him the passcode to her cell phone. According to the Sheriff’s Office report, she provided pictures of the injuries.

She also claimed her husband broke her pinky finger during an argument in 2015. She told deputies she had a neighbor take her to a hospital for treatment.

Baxter Troutman was charged with one count of aggravated battery and two counts of battery. He previously served as state representative for District 66.

If you have been arrested and charged with aggravated battery, even if you have been wrongfully accused, you need to obtain legal representation as soon as possible. Many individuals charged with domestic violence crimes do not seek the legal representation they truly need in order to successfully prove their innocence. When facing a serious crime like aggravated battery, there is no substitute for aggressive and powerful legal representation that may ultimately keep you out of jail.

Given that serious bodily harm may result from aggravated battery, Florida prosecutors are especially tough on the accused. The consequences of a conviction can include a potentially long prison sentence hefty fines. Our Florida Domestic Violence Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton know what to expect from the prosecution and can provide you with honest legal representation, making sure you are fully aware of the potential consequences you are facing and your options for overcoming your charges.

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