Tampa Criminal Defense Lawyer

Your Future is Too Important to Risk

Were You Charged with A Crime in The Tampa Bay Area?

Our Criminal Defense Attorneys are Eager to Defend Your Rights

Any interaction with law enforcement can be stressful, whether it’s a welfare check, response to a noise complaint, or police investigation. This stress can become terrifying when it involves an arrest. An arrest in Tampa typically means that law enforcement thinks you’re guilty of a crime. If this is your situation, you need to contact our Tampa criminal defense lawyer right away to reduce the likelihood of a conviction.

Criminal offenses in Tampa, Florida, are categorized into felonies and misdemeanors. Misdemeanors are minor crimes (such as shoplifting and disorderly conduct) that attract a jail term not exceeding 1 year. Individuals convicted of a misdemeanor may also pay fines of not more than $1,000.

On the other hand, felonies are more severe criminal violations that result in prolonged prison sentences and heavier fines. Depending on the degree of felony, the convict may also face life imprisonment or a death sentence. Examples of felonies include murder, drug possession, burglary, kidnapping, sex crimes, and driving under the influence.

Fortunately, an arrest or criminal charge is not the end of the world. There’s still an opportunity for you to defend yourself and avoid a conviction if you take the right steps early enough.

At Taracks & Associates, we derive our satisfaction from seeing accused persons escape the harsh penalties that follow a guilty verdict. We’ll guide you through Tampa’s criminal legal landscape, fighting for your rights and leaving no stone unturned in achieving the desired outcomes.

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Dos And Don’ts after Being Arrested in Tampa

Learn How to Face Criminal Charges The Right Way

Here’s what you should do if you’re arrested in Tampa, Florida:

Invoke Your Right to Remain Silent

Because of your Miranda rights, you don’t have to say anything to law enforcement upon arrest. The arresting police officers must inform you of this right before taking you into custody. It primarily means that you can decide to remain silent during questioning. The reason for this is simple—anything you say can be used against you in a court of law.

So, fight the urge to explain yourself to law enforcement agents, thinking it will put you in their good graces. Most of the time, it doesn’t. Instead, it exposes you to tricky questions that’ll force you to incriminate yourself even before the severity of the situation dawns on you.

Keep Calm

An arrest is a distressing situation, so it’s easy to feel anxious. However, you must remain calm and cooperate with the police officers as much as possible. Obey their instructions to the extent that they don’t trample on your rights. This will go a long way in ensuring that an already bad situation doesn’t become worse.

Document Everything Possible

You should start thinking about gathering evidence to defend your case from the moment you were arrested, so don’t forget to document every minute detail from the time of your arrest to your attorney’s arrival. For example, you can write down the arresting officers’ names and badge numbers, as well as witnesses’ details.

Document everything that comes to mind, even if you think it is insignificant. Our criminal defense lawyers will analyze what you’ve gathered and determine what information is vital to your defense. If you’re lucky, your documentation may prove an unlawful arrest that helps to suppress evidence or dismiss your case.

Contact Our Law Firm

Another aspect of your Miranda rights is having your attorney present during questioning. However, the role of your legal representative extends beyond the interrogation room to trial and beyond. Not only should you hire a lawyer, you should also get one who focuses on criminal defense. It’s your life at stake here, and you deserve the best quality legal representation that you can get.

That’s why we encourage you to contact only tested and trusted attorneys like us. We’ll dedicate all our resources to defending the charge against you.

These are the common mistakes to avoid upon an arrest:

Resisting Arrest

It’s never a good idea to struggle with a police officer or act aggressively toward them. Doing so will not only necessitate their use of force but may also lead to additional charges against you. Note that your resistance doesn’t have to be violent to occasion a charge of resisting arrest. For example, you can resist an arrest by giving law enforcement false information or walking away from them.

Discussing Your Case on Social Media

The same rule for not disclosing information to law enforcement without your attorney’s approval applies to everyone else, especially on social media. This will ensure that you don’t incriminate yourself in any way. You should only discuss your case with your lawyers because the attorney-client privilege for confidential communication binds them.

Jumping Bail

You’re to adhere strictly to your release conditions if you’re granted bail pending trial. One of the conditions is to be available in court at each hearing date or whenever required. If you violate this condition, you’ll likely be charged with bail jumping, a separate offense that carries steep penalties.

The consequences of bail jumping or failure to appear include bail forfeiture, a second arrest, or prison term. So, except for valid reasons such as a health emergency, you should never willfully miss your court date.

Committing A Crime

One of the worst things to do while on bail is to commit another crime in violation of your release conditions. No matter how minor the offense is, it can significantly worsen your case. For example, the judge will likely revoke your bail, meaning that you will be placed in custody until your case is concluded. This will also reduce your chances of a plea deal with the prosecutor.

Hiding Facts from Your Attorney

Always remember that your criminal defense attorney is your one true ally in times like this. They need to know the full details of your case for the sole purpose of helping you avoid conviction or severe punishments. Blindsiding your lawyer by misrepresenting information or keeping important facts away from them makes their job more difficult. Regardless of how noble your reasons are, it drastically reduces your chances of succeeding in your case.

Are you confused about what’s expected of you after an arrest? Our attorneys are always ready to give you professional and personalized guidance when you contact our law firm.

What Types of Crimes Do We Handle?

We Tackle A Wide Variety of Federal And State Criminal Cases

The criminal defense attorneys at Taracks & Associates handle several federal, state, felony, and misdemeanor offenses. The common offenses we defend against include:

  • Assault and battery
  • Domestic violence
  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
  • Drug crimes
  • Felony offenses
  • Hit-and-run charges
  • Misdemeanors
  • Probation violations
  • Sex crimes
  • Theft, and many more.

Regardless of the crime you’ve been charged with, reach out to us at (813) 281-2897 immediately. We’ll get to work immediately through thoroughly scrutinized defense strategies to get you discharged or acquitted.

What Are The Common Defenses to Crimes in Tampa, Florida?

Learn The Common Ways To Defend Criminal Allegations in Tampa

Accused persons have several defenses available to them, depending on their case’s specific crime and unique circumstances. However, the most common ones include:

Insufficient Evidence

The burden of proof in criminal cases rests on the prosecution. Typically, your criminal defense attorney will analyze the strength of the prosecutor’s case to determine whether there’s a case to answer. Without ample evidence to prove that you’re guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, the charges against you will be dismissed. This is usually the case when the state can’t provide credible witnesses or DNA evidence.

Alibi

An alibi shows that you were somewhere else around the time the offense occurred.

Duress or Necessity

Duress is one of the viable defenses to criminal offenses in Florida. It connotes that you committed the crime, but not of your free will. In other words, your actions were necessary to prevent a dangerous situation.

For example, perhaps you drove while under the influence of alcohol in order to escape a robbery at a house party.  In such a case, you wouldn’t be convicted of DUI since you had to drive while impaired to flee from danger.

Self Defense

Self-defense happens when you use reasonable force against another to protect yourself and your family members from bodily harm. This implies that you couldn’t have acted otherwise (for example, by retreating) to avoid the aggressor.

Meanwhile, per Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law, you’re allowed to employ deadly force in defending yourself and others in a life-threatening situation. This is a common defense to a murder charge and is a “get out of jail free card” in the right circumstances. However, unlike the general self-defense which is an affirmative defense that you must prove in court, this law grants homeowners immunity from prosecution.

Mistaken Identity

Law enforcement officers can easily mistake you for an offender due to certain shared characteristics. These may include similar names, appearance, behavior, car models and the like. In such cases, providing evidence to show that you’re a victim of mistaken identity will let you off the hook.

Why Choose Us?

We Put in Extra Effort to Secure Your Acquittal or Reduce Your Charges

At Taracks & Associates, we truly see you — you’re not just another case file to boost our client base. We strive to understand your fears, worries, and peculiar needs to ensure that we provide help for you just where it matters. First, we leverage our years of experience in handling cases like yours to aggressively fight your charges. Then, we provide you with emotional support to alleviate your stress during this trying period.

Our goal is to help you get your life back in the most wholesome ways possible. We’ve done this for our past clients and we can do it for you too.

FAQs

Tough Criminal Case Questions Answered Simply 

Criminal cases can be complex to handle and come with their fair share of uncertainties. Below we’ve clarified the areas many clients find confusing:

How Do I Choose My Criminal Defense Attorneys? 

Your case’s outcome depends significantly on how skillful your legal representative is. Sadly, many lawyers know the law but lack the requisite courtroom experience and talent to defend against serious criminal charges.  Fortunately, our attorneys have extensive courtroom experience and employ an aggressive approach in the defense of our clients. We’ll prepare a strong defense on your behalf to increase the possibility of a favorable result.

What If I Was Accused Falsely?

Many innocent individuals find themselves serving a prison term because they refused solid legal representation. Always remember that your innocence alone is not enough in the face of convincing evidence against you.  If you’ve been wrongfully accused, don’t hesitate to contact our legal team. We’ll expose the truth and fight aggressively to get the case dismissed within the shortest time possible.

How Can I Avoid Conviction? 

Many defendants choose to plead guilty without having an attorney look into the details of their case. Ironically, many of these cases have viable defense options and could have been successfully fought in court.  To avoid a conviction, you should approach our attorneys for a full review of all the evidence in your case.  With this, we can prepare a strong defense on your behalf.

Will I Serve A Jail Term? 

Florida prescribes very harsh punishments for criminal offenses. Many felony and misdemeanor charges include mandatory prison time.  If you have been accused of a serious crime, you’re at high risk of spending some time in jail upon conviction. Contact our firm as soon as possible after your arrest for immediate defense action.

Should I Stick with A Public Defender? 

No. A public defender is a defense attorney who is assigned to an individual’s case when that individual cannot afford or refuses to seek legal representation. Unfortunately, public defense services are not personalized, due to the overwhelmingly large caseloads that they handle. Even if you’re innocent, a public defender may not bring a solid case to get your charges dismissed or reduced.

What’s The Difference between State And Federal Cases? 

The major difference between these types of cases is the courts in which they are handled. State cases are handled in state court and typically involve alleged criminal offenses against state laws. Federal cases are handled in federal court, involve federal investigators, and typically cover criminal offenses against federal laws. Again, federal prosecutors have endless resources at their disposal, making a strong defense even more vital.

Can I Post Bail?

You may be able to post bail so that you can get out of jail while awaiting your hearing. Usually, a judge will decide on the amount of bail based on numerous factors. These include the nature of your offense, your “flight risk” and the possible threat you pose to the community. Note that while there may be standardized bail amounts for particular offenses, bail is typically refused or set at high amounts for serious criminal offenses.

Is It Possible to Get My Criminal Conviction Expunged?

No. In Florida, expungement (record clearing) is only possible for crimes that individuals have not been convicted for. Again, even if you have been declared “not guilty” of a crime, you may not meet eligibility requirements for expungement, so it’s important to discuss your case in depth with a Florida criminal defense attorney from our firm.

What Is A Plea Bargain?

A plea agreement (or plea arrangement) is an offer from the prosecution to the defense. Typically, this involves a guilty plea in exchange for reduced charges or a more favorable sentence. Accepting a plea agreement is not right for everyone. For example, we may advise you not to accept a plea agreement if we believe that you have a good chance of going to trial and winning.

It’s impossible to exhaust all the questions you may have about your criminal case in this section. So, reach out to us at (813) 281-2897 immediately to clarify any confusing aspects of your case. We’re available around the clock to respond to you.

Consult Our Experienced Criminal Defense Attorneys in The Tampa Bay Area Now!

Act Quickly to Avoid A Criminal Conviction

A criminal charge in Tampa, Florida, isn’t something to take lightly. Even if you’re innocent, the prosecution will work hard to keep you behind bars based on misleading but compelling evidence.  You have to employ every available legal means to ensure that you don’t end up a convict.

At Taracks & Associates law firm, we’re well-known for our prowess in handling federal and state criminal offenses. We’re not frightened by the severity of your case. Instead, tough cases give us the drive to work tirelessly to explore the best defense strategies. Even in the worst-case scenarios, we’ll fight to ensure that you get the best possible outcomes.

Reach out to us at (813) 281-2897. Protect your future by scheduling a free consultation with our dedicated criminal defense attorneys now.

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    Florida Attorney Barry Taracks

    Criminal Defense Attorney in Tampa

    Former Prosecutor Who is Ready to Fight for You

    In the time immediately following a criminal charge of any kind, it is absolutely imperative that you do not hesitate to take the necessary steps to protect your future against those that would seek to damage it. Although legally you are considered to be innocent until proven guilty, if you are facing a criminal charge, you will find that there are those that would not afford you this courtesy. Act today to protect your future!

    We Can Protect Your Future in Florida

    Our reputation stems from our ability to handle even the most complex criminal cases. We are known for our legal prowess and knowledge and are able to assist whether the case takes place within or out of a courtroom. Start your defense by requesting a FREE consultation. We would be happy to discuss your case and determine how we can help you.

    To learn more about how our award-winning Florida defense attorney can help in your situation, schedule a consultation or call us directly at (813) 281-2897

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    Your Rights are Our Priority

    People facing criminal charges have many choices for defense counsel and a common misconception is that the service and expertise across this pool of attorneys is roughly the same. This is cannot be further from the truth. At our firm, we are proud to provide every one of our clients with a level of criminal defense few other firms can match. From simple traffic violations to federal RICO cases, our team of seasoned litigators has the experience needed to assess the circumstances of your case and provide you the options and strategies needed best resolve your legal issue.