Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. Attorneys & Counselors At Law
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Jacksonville Florida Criminal Defense Blog

Pierce v. State: Can Police Lie to Obtain a Confession?

It has been conventional wisdom for many years that police are allowed to lie to obtain incriminating statements against a defendant. For instance, during interrogation, police can tell the accused that an eyewitness has identified him as the person who committed the crime. Police also commonly and falsely claim that a co-defendant has confessed and implicated the defendant in the crime. Under the reasoning of the recently decided Pierce v. State, FLW (Fla. 1st DCA, June 6, 2017), however, police cannot misstate the application of Miranda v. Arizona to obtain a confession.

A Mother's Death, a Botched Inquiry and a Sheriff at War

As is his practice, Mr. Bogdanich has written an extensively researched article about how Agent Rodgers became the object of a campaign to destroy his career and reputation. His offense was the refusal to rubber stamp the conclusions of a deeply flawed investigation into the death of Michelle O'Connel.

What are field sobriety tests?

In Florida, you may be asked to complete field sobriety tests if you are pulled over and the officer has reason to believe that you may be driving while under the influence. But just what are field sobriety tests, and how are they utilized? offers both standardized and non-standardized versions of field sobriety tests, which can then be used by officers at their discretion if they feel you may be driving under the influence. Standardized versions of the test include:

  • The one-leg stand
  • The walk and turn
  • The horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) test

What is the purpose of the appeals process?

A criminal conviction for any sort of offense in Jacksonville need not signal the end of your legal battle. If you were wrongly convicted and want the chance to prove that, the appellate process is there for you to take advantage of. Unfortunately, it is not as simple as saying that you would like to appeal your conviction. A fair amount of research should go into investigating the appeals process from a comprehensive prospective so that you know what to expect and each step.

The first thing to understand is what the purpose of the appeals process actually is. Rather than being a re-trying of your case, it is a judicial review of the decision of the trial court that heard it initially. A judge will review all the relevant facts and determine if a harmful legal error occurred. A “harmful legal error” is defined as any action that may have affected the outcome of your case. For an error to be considered by the appellate court, it must have been recorded by an objection during your trial. What that means is that either you or your attorney objected to it during your original proceedings.

What is the legal limit in Florida?

When it comes to drunk driving charges, there are many things to consider. In fact, some people may be surprised to find out that the legal limit for drunk driving is lower than they expected for certain drivers, such as those who have not reached the legal drinking age. In Jacksonville, Florida, DUI charges can completely upend a person's life. For example, they may be sentenced to prison for an extended period of time, face harsh financial penalties or lose their job. To make matters worse, their record could return to haunt them years later, when they are applying for a job.

According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the legal limit is 0.08. In other words, if you operate a vehicle and your blood alcohol level is 0.08 or greater, you are breaking the law. However, the consequences for driving under the influence can vary, depending on your blood alcohol content (BAC) level. For example, if your BAC level is 0.15 or above, the financial penalties and prison sentences associated with the accusations may be harsher. In fact, someone who has not reached the age of 21 can be charged with driving under the influence if their BAC level is 0.02 or greater.

Can a Refusal to Admit Sexual Misconduct Be Grounds to Violate Sex Offender Probation?

Possession and other drug-related offenses

From drug possession to manufacturing, distribution and other offenses, the consequences of drug crime charges can have a permanent effect on your future. At Sheppard, White, Kachergus & DeMaggio, our Jacksonville law firm knows how difficult these allegations can be for people and their entire families in Florida. 

If you are accused of any kind of drug crime, you may face an array of problems. Depending on the details of your case, you could face a lengthy prison sentence and be ordered to pay financial penalties. However, the repercussions can go much farther. For example, if you are a college student, these charges could have an impact on your ability to receive financial aid. Or, if you facing these accusations, you may be fired. Worse yet, you could have a hard time finding another job and your record could create challenges for you years down the road. In fact, even if you are accused of a relatively minor offense, such as the possession of drug paraphernalia, your life may be upended.

DUIs involving women

The number of drunk drivers on the roads in Florida may be decreasing each day. But the number of intoxicated female motorists is increasing. There are two million more female drivers on the roads than there are men, states Traditionally, men were more likely to be apprehended for driving while drunk. Although males may make up the majority of DUI arrests across the country, recent studies show that more women are drinking alcohol and driving, regardless of the risks.

Here is a brief rundown of why more women are receiving DUIs.

CSI-style forensic labs at a retail location near you

While the CSI: Crime Scene Investigation television franchise ended first-run episodes and only exists in syndication, new CSI-style "adventures" continue at high-profile locations.

Law enforcement does not have a corner on the market in digital-forensics laboratories. These labs can be found throughout the country in banks, tech companies, and even well known retail company headquarters.

Knowledge That Victim Is a Law Enforcement Officer Now Required to Convict for Attempted Murder of Law Enforcement Officer

Florida law imposes harsher penalties on defendants who knowingly commit crimes of violence against law enforcement officers. For instance, a defendant found guilty of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer is subject to a mandatory life sentence. Understandably, a criminal defense attorney who represents a client faced with one of these charges will strive to remove the law enforcement victim enhancement, if possible. A recent decision out of the Florida Supreme Court-Ramroop v. State-has made it easier for defendants to do just that, by holding that the defendant must have known the victim was a law enforcement officer for the statute to apply.

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  1. Martindale Hubbell AV Preeminent Peer Rated for highest level of Provisional Excellence 2016 Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2016 American College of Trial Lawyers William J.Sheppard Best Lawyers Lawyer of the year 2014 The Florida Bar Board Certified Best Lawyers|Best Law Firms US News|Criminal Defense: White-Collor|Tier 1|Jacksonville|2017
  2. Best Lawyers Best Law Firms US News 2017 AV Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Rated For Ethical Standards and Legal Ability Super Lawyers Best Lawyers Linking Lawyers And Clients Worldwide

Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. Attorneys & Counselors at Law.
215 N. Washington Street
Jacksonville, FL 32202

Phone: 904-701-0589
Phone: 904-727-7191
Fax: 904-356-9667
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Regular office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

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