| Read Time: 2 minutes | Personal Injury

What Is a Tortfeasor?

If you’ve been injured in any type of accident and are pursuing an insurance claim, one question that you’ll have to answer that will be asked by the insurance company is that of who the tortfeasor is in your claim. This word, along with other legal jargon, may not be one that you’re familiar with. At the law offices of Moses & Rooth, our experienced personal injury lawyers can help you to navigate the law and make sense of complicated terms and rules. Here’s what you need to know about the word “tortfeasor” and its implications in a personal injury claim– What Is a Tortfeasor? One of the best definitions for the word tortfeasor comes from the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University Law School. According to this source, a tortfeasor is simply one who commits a tort. So, what’s a tort? A tort is an act or an omission that causes harm or injury to another and amounts to a civil wrong. As a result, the courts can impose liability.  There are three types of torts: strict liability torts, negligence torts, and intentional torts. Most injury cases deal with negligence torts. To sum it up, a tortfeasor is a party who causes harm to another by committing a tort.  Why Does It Matter? If a party breaches the duty of care owed to another and harm to the latter results, the former party has committed a tort and can be held liable for the harm. However, in order to prove liability and recover damages, the injured party will need to prove the details of the tort. Namely, the following four elements must be established: the tortfeasor owed a duty of care to the plaintiff; the tortfeasor breached the duty of care; the breach of the duty of care was the proximate cause of harm; and the plaintiff suffered damages as a result.  An insurance company will ask who the tortfeasor is in a claim because they need to know who breached the duty of care, the details of that breach, and who should be held liable. Someone who does not commit a tort cannot be held liable for the damages to another.  Other Important Parties in a Personal Injury Claim In addition to the word tortfeasor–which, remember, is the person who commits the tort (civil wrong)–other important terms to know are: Plaintiff – the party who is bringing forth a lawsuit Defendant – the party against whom a civil action is being filed (i.e. the tortfeasor). 

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Orlando News

Florida Felons Win Their Voting Rights Back….or Did They??

On November 6, 2018 Florida voters approved a constitutional amendment which automatically restores the right to vote to 1.4 million individuals with felony convictions. Amendment 4 (Initiative Information) restores the right to vote for people with felony convictions upon completion of the terms of their sentence, including probation and parole.  The amendment does not apply to individuals convicted of murder or felony sexual offense. The amendment went into effect on January 8, 2019.  It was a popular and overwhelmingly successful amendment. But, the new amendment is threatened with politics, policy and certain limitations. Florida House of Representatives voted to advance a new bill (HB 7089) that would block certain convicted felons from their right to vote. ( Florida House of Representatives – Documents   The House Bill 7089 would require felons who have completed their jail terms to pay all fines and fees associated with their case BEFORE regaining the right to vote.  Basically, if you are Florida felon and have completed your jail time you have to pay all your fees and court costs before your right to vote is restored.  What does this really mean to Florida felons?  Essentially, Florida is a state that maintains more than 115 different types of fines, fees and surcharges which can be assessed against defendants in court cases, including those involving traffic violations, according to an analysis by the Fines and Fees Justice Center, based in New York. That’s the second-largest number of fines, fees and surcharges assessed anywhere in the country.   Florida Lawmakers who support this new bill say they are simply clarifying what the Amendment actually means by clearly defining that an individual completes their terms of probation or parole when all their fines and fees that have been assessed by the court are paid off.  Opponents argue that this essentially blocks most individuals from restoring their right to vote because most felons coming straight out of jail are not able to pay back all their fines and fees. The bill was supposed to go to Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis’ desk to decide whether to sign the bill, let it become law, or issue a veto. Gov. Desantis would have signed this bill and made it law, however the bill passed in the House but did not receive a vote in the Senate.  The bill failed to pass in the Senate before the legislature adjourned on May 3, 2019.  Contact Moses and Rooth Attorneys at Law for your criminal defense needs.

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| Read Time: 5 minutes | Criminal Defense

A Legal Guide for Florida Spring Breakers: Know Before You Go

CC image by Ekaterina Vladinakova at Flickr If you’re heading to Florida for spring break in 2019, the sunshine and warm water may not be all that you encounter. In fact, spring breakers are notorious for getting into legal trouble – typically for things like underage drinking. Before you go, here are a few laws and safety tips that you should review to reduce the risk of an accident and keep you out of legal trouble– Staying Safe – Avoiding the Four Ds As a mnemonic device to help you remember safety and the law when you’re on spring break, consider the four Ds that you should always avoid: Drunk driving Drugged driving Distracted driving Drowsy driving All four of the above are, first and foremost, extremely unsafe. When you drive drunk, drugged, drowsy, or distracted, you significantly increase your risk of causing a motor vehicle accident. You may also have legal consequences if you are apprehended for drunk or drugged driving, and even texting while driving is against the law in the Sunshine State. Alcohol For those who are traveling for spring break, alcohol typically presents the biggest temptation, and of the biggest health, safety, and legal risks, too. While our law firm does not condone underage drinking, we do want to remind you that if you do drink–whether of the legal drinking age or not–to never get behind the wheel after you’ve consumed an alcoholic beverage. CC image by Image Catalog at Flickr In addition to staying clear of drunk driving, remember that it is also illegal to have an open container of alcohol within the car, as found in Florida Statutes Section 316.1936. Remind your passengers that if they want to drink, they can’t do it while your vehicle is in operation. Find a Designated Driver Avoiding the four Ds means finding a designated driver if people in your group have been drinking or using drugs. You should also find another driver if those in your group are overly-fatigued; studies show that fatigued driving has the potential to be just as dangerous as drunk driving. When you’re assigning a designated driver in your group, do so smartly. Characteristics of a designated driver that are important include that the driver has/is: A valid driver’s license and auto insurance; Responsible; and Able to resist the temptation not to drink, even when hanging out with friends. It’s always a good idea to select a designated driver before you hit the bars or are exposed to alcohol. If there is no one in your group who makes for a safe designated driver, take a cab, use a rideshare, or find another way home. Know Your Limits If you will be drinking on this spring break, make sure you do so safely – which means more than just avoiding the driver’s seat. It’s also important that you set and know your limits – how much can you personally consume safely? Don’t drink more than you can handle, and try to stick to the general rule of no more than one drink per hour, coupled with a glass of water in between alcoholic beverages. (Note that depending on who you are, the one-drink-per-hour rule may be very inaccurate.) When drinking, be sure to always pair your alcohol consumption with plenty of food and water, too. It’s also important that you familiarize yourself with the symptoms of alcohol poisoning, and keep an eye out for anyone in your group who may be suffering from alcohol poisoning. The American Addictions Centers lists a few of the symptoms of alcohol poisoning as vomiting, hypothermia, seizure, loss of bowel or bladder control, irregular pulse, and blue-tinged skin. If you suspect that anyone is suffering from alcohol poisoning, you should seek emergency medical care/dial 911 immediately. Alcohol Ban on Beaches The car is not the only place that you can’t have an open container of alcohol in Florida; alcohol is also prohibited on many of the beaches, too. Refer to the Orlando Weekly for a list of beaches in Florida where you can legally drink alcohol, and note that Panama City Beach has banned alcohol on the beach as an “emergency measure” for this year’s spring break. Other Important Laws It’s also important that, in addition to alcohol-specific laws, you also review the rules regarding using a fake ID and public intoxication. As an added safety tip, we also recommend getting vaccinated before coming to Florida, which may offer protection from bacteria and viruses that are often rampant in large gatherings, like those that are found during spring break. Be Smart About Sexual Assault, Rape, and Other Violent Crimes CC image by freestocks.org at Flickr Spring break is no longer just an opportunity for young people to celebrate a reprieve from the grind of university life and get in a little sunshine; it is also a time where many people, spring breakers and otherwise, commit serious crimes, including rape, sexual assault, theft, and assault. During spring break, adhere to the following safety tips: Don’t leave a drink unattended – date rape drugs, including GHB and Rohypnol, could be placed in your drink while you’re distracted; Travel with a buddy – don’t go to unfamiliar places alone, especially in areas where drugs and alcohol are present; Have a plan, including knowing where you’re going and when, and how to get there; Don’t give out your information, including where you’re staying while on spring break, to strangers; Tell someone where you’re going before you leave and when you plan to be back; Keep your belongings close to avoid pickpocketing and theft; and If things get heated between you and another spring breaker, walk away – an assault can be dangerous, and could result in criminal charges if you’re involved. Dos and Don’ts of Interacting with the Police CC image by Alex Smith at Flickr If you are pulled over or otherwise stopped by police while on spring break this year, it’s important that you know how to respond to protect...

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Orlando News

Puerto Ricans Can Now Get Vital Documents Easier in Orlando

Catastrophic storms and an overall depressed economy have forced many Puerto Ricans to migrate to Florida. Over the past few years, over 100 people have made the journey to Florida every single day. The numbers might only be increasing. Once safely settled in the U.S. however, these residents often need vital records documents, such as birth certificates, which have proven hard to get from Puerto Rico. Fortunately, as the Orlando Sentinel recently reported, Puerto Ricans can now get their vital records at a new office that has opened: the Integrated Services Center (CSI) in Orlando. Typically, Puerto Ricans could only order their vital records by mail or online, and they often had to wait up to 45 days before the records arrived. Now, the records will be issued immediately, which makes things much easier. Why Might You Need Vital Records? Common vital records you might need include: Birth certificate Marriage certificate Death certificate Certifications of child-support payments There are many reasons you might need them. If you are applying for a job or government benefits, you will most likely need a birth certificate. If you are divorcing, you most likely need a copy of your marriage certificate. A death certificate can help you close financial accounts and handle a loved one’s assets. It might also be necessary to show that you are the true owner of property, if the deceased was once the owner. Also, if you are sued for failing to pay child support, you can use a certification to show that you have remained up to date. Without the documentation, a judge might enter an order against you for arrearages and garnish your wages. Where You Can Get Your Copies The CSI office is located at 6925 Lake Ellenor Drive, Suite 100. Its hours are Monday through Friday, 11:30am to 3:30 pm. To get a copy of your birth certificate, you must pay $5. You will also need to pay $10 for any additional copies of your birth certificate, as well as for all other vital records like death certificates and marriage certificates. You should be able to walk out with your records soon after paying. Before showing up, call ahead and ask about acceptable methods of payment (cash, check, credit card, etc.) The new CSI should make things much easier on our state’s new residents. Before, Puerto Ricans living in Florida had to travel back to the island or give a family member a power of attorney to request the documents. These options were impracticable for many people. Now, thankfully, Puerto Ricans can get reliable records in a timely manner. Need Legal Help? Contact Moses & Rooth We are a prominent criminal defense law firm located in Orlando and have represented hundreds of people involved in criminal matters in both state and federal court. If you have been accused of a crime, please reach out to us today. We offer a free consultation, which you can schedule by calling 407-377-0150. You have no time to lose.  

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Drug Charges

Lack of Evidence Forces Appeals Court to Throw Out Drug Charges

To be convicted of a crime in Florida, the state must present proof beyond a reasonable doubt. Essentially, this means that jurors must have a firm conviction that you are guilty before they can vote to convict. This principle was central to a recent appellate court decision in Florida. At issue was whether the criminal defendant “possessed” drugs found at a gas station, and the state’s evidence was very weak. Although the defendant was convicted at trial, the appellate court reversed one of the convictions for lack of evidence. Facts of the Case While investigating a shoot-out that involved two vehicles at a gas station, police searched the station property and found a cocktail shaker cup lying next to a fence. The cup was stuffed with marijuana. On the other side of town, police stopped a car with three people inside that police believed had been involved in the shootout. One of the men, Darafeal McKire, was seated in the back seat. When he emerged, he was bleeding from a gunshot wound and was taken to the hospital. In the back seat of the car, police found a bag of cocaine with traces of blood on it near the location where Mr. McKire had been seated. Based on this evidence, police charged McKire with possession of cocaine and possession of marijuana. Security video at the gas station showed McKire emerging from a car at the gas station and dropping two objects on the ground before the shootout started. After one car departed, McKire got back into his vehicle, which then drove away. At trial, he was convicted of both possession counts. Legal Issue On appeal, the court overturned the conviction for possession of the marijuana found at the gas station. First, the court held that it was not clear from the video evidence that McKire had dropped a shaker cup with marijuana in it. Second, the location where he dropped his objects did not line up with the location where police found the shaker cup against the fence. The appellate court also rejected the government’s argument that McKire had possession of the objects simply because he was in close physical proximity to the marijuana. Indeed, the court noted that the defendant was not found anywhere near the marijuana and was not making any moves toward it. In fact, he was found across town, emerging from a vehicle while bleeding. For all of these reasons, the court overturned the conviction and acquitted him of the marijuana possession charge. His conviction for possession of the cocaine, however, still stands. Speak to an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney As this case shows, the state is very aggressive prosecuting drug crimes and often brings charges with very little evidentiary support. If you have been arrested, you need an aggressive drug possession attorney who can fight back against these charges. At Moses & Rooth, we have represented many defendants in drug cases, and we know how to win. For more information about whether we can help you, please reach out to us today. We offer a free consultation. All you need to do is call 407-377-0150.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | DUI

What Do I Need to Know if I Get a DUI?

Hundreds of people are arrested for drunk driving each year in the Orlando area. In Florida, driving under the influence (DUI) can lead to serious criminal and administrative penalties. With that in mind, here are a few things you need to know about how DUI laws work in Orlando. What Is Considered “Drunk Driving” in Florida? The most common definition of DUI is operating a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher. A person’s BAC is normally determined through the use of a Breathalyzer or similar device administered to the driver by law enforcement. But it’s important to note that BAC is not the sole method of establishing drunk driving. A person is guilty of DUI anytime their “normal faculties are impaired” while behind the wheel, which may be established by other evidence, such as testimony that the defendant was driving erratically. DUI Is Not Just About Alcohol Although we normally associate DUI with alcohol, in fact the law refers to driving under the influence of any “chemical substance” or controlled substance specified in state law. This can include anything from marijuana to nitrous oxide. Again, the key is whether or not the person was impaired due to the use of the chemical. You Can Go to Jail for DUI–Even a First Offense If you are charged, tried, and convicted of DUI for the first time in Orlando, the judge has the discretion to fine you between $500 and $1,000–as well as send you to jail for up to 6 months. Jail is not mandatory mind you, but it is a possibility. And if you are in court for your second DUI, the penalty range increases accordingly: a fine of $1,000 to $2,000 and up to 9 months in jail. There Are Additional Factors That May Enhance Your Sentence Two things that will make a DUI charge worse: Having a BAC of 0.15 percent or greater, or having a minor in the vehicle with you at the time of your arrest. Either of these factors will effectively double the range of fines listed above. Your Driver’s License Will Be Suspended The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles is required to suspend a driver’s license for at least 180 days following a first DUI conviction. This suspension may last up to one year. And if the DUI resulted in “bodily injury” to another person, the minimum suspension period goes up to 3 years. Refusing to Take a Breathalyzer Has Consequences Florida is an “implied consent” state. This means that if Orlando police have probable cause to arrest you for DUI, it’s presumed you consent to a blood, breath, or urine test to determine your BAC. You can still refuse the test, but it will result in an automatic 1-year suspension of your driver’s license if this is your first offense. You Need to Call an Orlando DUI Defense Lawyer Although a drunk driving charge may seem like no big deal at first glance, it is a criminal matter and must be treated as such. This means you need to work with an experienced Orlando DUI defense attorney who understands the local legal system and can advise you on the appropriate steps to take. Contact Moses & Rooth, Attorneys at Law to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team today. Call (407) 377-0150.  

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Criminal Defense

Is Vaping Marijuana Legal in Florida?

Medical marijuana remains a complicated topic in Florida. As you probably know, voters approved a state constitutional amendment in 2016 to authorize the use of marijuana for medical purposes. But this doesn’t mean you can simply roll your own joint and smoke it because you think you have glaucoma. The Florida legislature adopted extensive regulations to implement the voters’ decision. Among other things, these rules specifically exclude smoking marijuana from the definition of “medical use.” Instead, individuals with a qualifying medical condition, and who receive a Medical Cannabis Card from a doctor licensed to issue one, can obtain what is known as low-THC cannabis, which is the active ingredient in marijuana. Vaping vs. Smoking So if you can’t smoke marijuana, how can you medically ingest low-THC cannabis? One approved method is vaping. But what exactly is vaping? When you smoke marijuana, you are burning the dried plant material at high temperatures to create smoke that you then inhale. Although many people think smoking pot is safer than, say, tobacco-based cigarettes, the truth is that smoking any plant-based substance releases thousands of chemical compounds, many of which are toxic to the human body. In contrast, vaping involves using an electronic device–a vaporizer–to heat the plant material (often in liquid form) at a much lower temperature. The idea is to convert the underlying material into water vapor rather than smoke. If done correctly, this water vapor contains a higher concentration of the desired chemical–in the case of medical marijuana, THC–without producing the toxic residue associated with smoking. Keep in mind, however, that while vaping may be safer than smoking, when it comes to marijuana or THC-based products, it is only legal in Florida for medical purposes. “Recreational” vaping of cannabis is still illegal. That doesn’t mean it’s not occurring. To the contrary, according to a recent CNN report, public health researchers have found cannabis vaping has become popular among some middle school and high school students. CNN cited a survey that found 1 in 11 students–12.4 percent of high schoolers and 4.5 percent of middle schoolers–had vaped marijuana at some point. One reason marijuana vaping has become more popular is that it is difficult for parents and teachers to know whether the liquid inside a vaporizer is based on nicotine or cannabis. Will It Soon Be Legal to Smoke Medical Marijuana? The legal issues surrounding medical marijuana are only going to grow more complex as the State of Florida continues to implement its regulations. Indeed, the Florida Department of Health is currently appealing a circuit court decision from Leon County that struck down the state’s ban on smoking medical marijuana. If that ruling is affirmed by the First District Court of Appeal, it could make vaping a less-attractive option for patients who would rather smoke a joint. In the meantime, if you have been charged with a drug crime related to the illegal possession or use of marijuana and need assistance from an experienced Orlando criminal defense attorney, contact Moses & Rooth right away by calling (407) 377-0150.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Traffic Offenses

New Laws Proposed for Skateboarders and Bicyclists in Orlando

In Florida, the rules of the road are not just about cars and other motor vehicles. Even bicyclists and skateboarders must follow the law when they’re out and about on public streets. In cities like Orlando, it is currently illegal to ride a bicycle or skateboard on a public sidewalk. But the Orlando City Council recently considering adoption of a new local ordinance that would change those rules. Skateboarding May Be a Permitted Mode of “Transportation” on Sidewalks At its September 17 meeting, the Council voted unanimously to endorse Ordinance No. 2018-56, which rewrites local traffic rules with respect to bicycles and skateboards. The ordinance’s introductory language states that opening Orlando’s sidewalks to skateboards and bicycles is consistent with the Council’s long-term plan to ensure that a “majority of all trips in the City are made by foot, bike, carpooling, or transit,” and that “properly regulated, skateboarding and bicycle sharing services offer a viable, healthy, and environmentally sustainable transportation option.” To be clear, with respect to skateboarding the ordinance is designed to encourage the use of such devices for transportation only. It does not cover individuals who use their boards to perform “tricks, jumps, gymnastics, grinding, or other physical feats unnecessary to the efficient conveyance or movement of the person from one location to another.” Within these parameters, the ordinance permits skateboarders to use the sidewalk, provided they yield the right-of-way to pedestrians and give an “audible signal before overtaking and passing a pedestrian.” The ordinance would further restrict the speed of motorized skateboards on sidewalks to no more than 15 miles per hour. And any skateboarder under the age of 16 must wear a helmet “that is properly fitted” and fastened to their head by a strap. Failure to follow any of these rules may result in a fine. Expanding Bike Sharing Opportunities Ordinance 2018-56 would also create new rules to permit “bike sharing” companies in Orlando. According to Spectrum News 13, only one such company is presently allowed to operate in the city. Bike share companies allow individuals to rent bicycles, typically via a smartphone app, for short periods of time. Under existing city regulations, the bike share company must provide “docks” for their rental bikes. But the new ordinance would authorize “dockless” services–in other words, the renter can simply abandon the bike once they are done using it. The new bike share rules would require any company to obtain a permit annually from the city and meet certain insurance, bonding, and reporting requirements. Have You Been Charged with a Traffic Offense? We Can Help The City Council must still pass Ordinance 2018-56 a second time at its October 8 meeting. But assuming the new rules do take effect, it will be good news for skateboarders and bicyclists throughout the city. Of course, with new rights comes new responsibilities. And if you are cited for a traffic offense related to the use of any vehicle on a public street or sidewalk and need legal advice, contact the experienced Orlando criminal defense lawyers at Moses & Rooth today by calling (407) 377-0150.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | DUI

Florida Drivers are No Longer the Worst in the Nation

We have good news for our fellow Floridians. We are no longer the worst drivers in the nation! Unfortunately, Florida drivers still rank very near the bottom of a new survey of states that graded them on the safety of their drivers. As reported by the Sun Sentinel, Florida ranked eighth in this survey—a minor improvement over the previous year, when Florida was ranked as the worst state. Although we applaud the baby steps, there is plenty of room to increase driver safety. The Study Financial website SmartAsset looked at all 50 states and graded them according to four metrics: The percentage of drivers lacking insurance The number of DUI arrests per driver The number of fatalities per mile driven The number of time state residents searched Google for speeding and traffic tickets We’re not sure these are the best metrics for ranking driver safety, but these are the ones chosen by SmartAsset. In any event, Florida’s numbers are not great—which should not surprise anyone given that we still ranked worse than 42 other states. According to Smart Asset, only 73% of Florida drivers have insurance, meaning over one quarter of our state’s motorists are on the road without insurance. Seeing that insurance is required to register a vehicle, this is surprising news. Also, Florida had around 2 DUI arrests per 1,000 drivers—again, not terrific. Florida managed to edge ahead of Mississippi, Tennessee, California, Missouri, New Mexico, and Texas in this survey—so be sure to brag the next time you visit one of those states. Massachusetts, however, ranked as the best state, with about 94% of its drivers insured. We guess they need something to be proud of given their terrible weather. What this Means for You Given the high number of uninsured vehicles, Florida motorists should make smart decisions when purchasing insurance. In particular, you should buy uninsured motorist coverage, which will kick in if an uninsured driver hits you. Throw in underinsured motorist coverage as well, which you can tap if you exhaust the insurance benefits of the driver at fault for the accident. If you do not have this coverage, then chances are you will lack sufficient resources if you get into a crash. There will be no insurance policy to cover lost wages, medical bills, property damage, and pain and suffering. Also consider buying “stackable” UM coverage, which will increase the amount of compensation available. For example, if you have three vehicles under one UM police for $25,000, you can stack them and immediately have $75,000 available in the event of a crash. Arrested for DUI? Call Us Today As a leading Florida criminal defense firm, Moses & Rooth is well acquainted with Florida’s driving under the influence laws. Our attorneys are former prosecutors who have handled countless DUI cases and can pinpoint weaknesses in the state’s case that might allow you to receive a favorable plea or beat the charges altogether. To schedule a free initial consultation with an Orlando criminal defense lawyer, please call 407-377-0150 or contact us online.  

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Criminal Defense

What are the Penalties for Vandalism?

In Florida, vandalism is called “criminal mischief” and it is covered by Florida statute 806.13. If you have been accused of criminal mischief, you will need an aggressive criminal defense attorney on your team. Penalties can be quite serious, and you will need to begin building a defense right away. Defining Criminal Mischief In Florida A person commits criminal mischief if they “willfully and maliciously” damage or injure someone else’s real or personal property. This damage can include drawing graffiti on the property. A few things jump out about this definition. The damage or injury must be willful or malicious, which basically means intentional. If you accidentally get in a car accident and slam into the side of someone’s house, you have not committed criminal mischief since you lacked the intent under the statute. You can also damage either real property (real estate) or personal property. If you harm a person, then that is a different crime (usually assault or battery). Penalties Your punishment will depend on how much damage you inflicted: If the damage is $200 or less, then you have committed a second-degree misdemeanor. If the damage is more than $200 but less than $1,000, you have committed a first-degree misdemeanor. If the damage is $1,000 or more, then you have committed a third-degree felony. If the damage interrupts the operation of a business or public services (such as the supply of water, gas, power or transportation or communication), then it is a third-degree felony regardless of the amount of damage. Jail time depends on whether you were convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony: A second-degree misdemeanor can carry up to 60 days in jail A first-degree misdemeanor might result in up to one year in jail A third-degree felony can result in up to 5 years in prison Those convicted can also be fined: A second-degree misdemeanor: up to $500 A first-degree misdemeanor: up to $1,000 A third-degree misdemeanor: up to $5,000 The amount of time you serve in jail or the amount of your fine will depend on many factors, so you should hire an Orlando criminal defense attorney to review your circumstances. Special Punishments for Graffiti The law also imposes a fine for graffiti, which depends on whether this is your first or a subsequent offense: At least $250 if this is your first offense At least $500 if this is your second offense At least $1,000 if this is your third or subsequent offense Parents will be required to pay this fine if their minor child defaced property with graffiti. Offenders will also need to perform at least 40-100 hours of community service, which can include the removal of graffiti from buildings. Speak to an Orlando Criminal Defense Attorney Criminal mischief is a serious crime that carries stiff consequences. At Moses & Rooth, we work aggressively to get a favorable outcome for our clients, which could include a dismissal, reduced charges, or an acquittal. For help building your defense, call us today at 407-377-0150. We offer a free consultation. You have no time to lose.  

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