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What is considered First Degree Assault?

In the state of Florida, being charged with First Degree Assault means a lot more than normal crime of Assault. Assault is a Second Degree Misdemeanor in Florida. That usually comes to 60 days in jail, to go with 6 months of probation and some fines. But when a person is charged with First Degree Assault it is because there is evidence that shows intent. The intent to cause serious physical injury to another person by using a deadly weapon or a dangerous instrument.

So the main difference between “first degree assault” and “second degree assault” comes down to the severity and premeditation of the alleged action. That can be a murky situation for the prosecution to prove, which helps the accused and their defense team. You can use the “conditional threat” defense. One example often used for this defense is when someone threatens to shoot another person, unless that person leaves the property. “Idle threat” is a defense used since it is not clear that the person was actually going to cause harm. “Unreasonable fear” is used if the accuser was taunting the defendant or didn’t believe the defendant would follow through with their threat.  

Depending on the facts of the case, the defense has many options available to prove their client’s innocence for a First Degree Assault charge. If convicted, your life may never be the same again. It’s amazing how fast life can change because of a physical or verbal altercation. It could be at a home or out in a public setting. That’s why it’s important to have a lawyer by your side to prove your innocence, or negotiate for reduced jail time in exchange for community service or treatment in an anger management program.

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