What to Expect After a Self-Defense Shooting in Florida

Any time firearms are involved in a crime, it is a serious situation. In the state of Florida, or anywhere in the United States, it is not legal to pull out a gun and shoot someone in broad daylight without reason. However, if you shoot someone because you were trying to protect yourself, there may be grounds to have any criminal charges against you dropped. Here, we discuss the parameters of self-defense shootings and what you can expect if you shoot a gun to defend yourself in Florida.

What is Considered Self-Defense in Florida?

The most important thing to understand regarding self-defense shootings is that every situation is different. The factors and details leading up to when the firearm was used are imperative to determining whether a person can be charged with a criminal offense. Common situations that are considered self-defense include home robberies, physical attacks, muggings, and more. There are four elements required to declare an act self-defense:

  • The attack was unprovoked
  • The attack threatens injury or death
  • The attack included a unreasonable degree of force
  • There was a reasonable fear of injury or death

If the act meets all of the above criteria, then the prosecution must determine whether the act is considered self-defense with the use of deadly force or self-defense with the use of non-deadly force. Both are treated differently.

Interacting with Law Enforcement After a Self-Defense Shooting

No matter the circumstances surrounding a self-defense shooting, the first thing you should do if you are involved in one is to contact law enforcement. It is important to call 911 as soon as possible and ask for emergency medical services to be dispatched to your location. When you are talking to the dispatch officer on the 911 call, it is essential to only tell them the facts related to the situation. Entering into any more of a discussion could release information that prosecution could use against you.

In addition to making a call to 911, you should be prepared to be questioned by law enforcement at the scene and again at the police station. Whenever you are questioned by authorities, it is essential to cooperate with them and hand over any evidence. However, always remember that you have the right to an attorney and are not required to answer any questions without your attorney present.

Should I Hire an Attorney for the Prosecution Process?

After formal questioning by the authorities, the district attorney (DA) will determine whether or not they should pursue criminal charges. If your case goes to court, and you have not yet hired an attorney, you should do so as soon as possible. In court, a trusted attorney is your best chance at mitigating the charges or reducing the penalties you face.

Even if the DA does not move your charges forward to court, it is important to know that your case could still turn into a civil lawsuit. In a civil lawsuit, the person you shot in self-defense could seek damages from you in the form of financial compensation. Whether you are facing a criminal or civil case, a knowledgeable attorney will know how to fight for you.

Knowledgeable Criminal Defense Attorneys in Florida Fight for You

If you have been involved in a self-defense shooting, you need the help of a trusted attorney as soon as possible. In Central Florida, the Umansky Law Firm is a trusted source of legal representation for adults facing criminal charges. Don’t let your life be defined by a single mistake. Contact the attorneys at the Umansky Law Firm today. With more than 100 years of collective experience, our team of former prosecutors provides a unique point of view with every case. They are knowledgeable in defense strategies for criminal defense cases and more.

Talk to a real attorney now. Call (407) 228-3838 or contact us online to set up your free consultation.