False imprisonment is generally thought of as a crime involving the trapping or imprisoning of another, using force or the threat to use force. Though this is absolutely true, the simple act of locking someone in an area against his or her will, and without the use of force can be considered false imprisonment as well. Codified by Florida Statute 787.02, this charge is a very hotly prosecuted accusation. Just as kidnapping, travelling to meet a minor, and possession of child pornography are crimes generally coupled with a more serious allegation, so too is this charge. It is not uncommon for a false imprisonment charge to involve other, equally as serious allegations in the form of aggravated battery, a hands on sex crime allegation, or some variety of child abuse. For this reason local police and State Attorney’s Offices review thoroughly an allegation and will pursue charges in most occasions if the facts permit. While never the primary analysis of a law enforcement agency, crimes such as this often carry with them media appeal which in turn, can make the prosecution of such offenses a political tool. Our lawyers have tried and defended these allegations successfully. Now is not the time to take a chance with your liberty. Contact our criminal attorneys today so that we can begin protecting your rights immediately.What Is False Imprisonment
This charge involves the act by an individual or group of individuals who forcibly, by verbal or physical threat, secretly confining, abducting, imprisoning, or restraining another person without lawful authority to do so, against his or her will. Run of the mill false imprisonment is a third-degree felony, punishable by up to 5 years in the Florida Department of Corrections and a $5,000 fine. While the crime in and of itself is a low level felony, the nature of the charge when reviewed under fact specific situations, often causes the charge to be pursued much more aggressively than other third degree felonies.
If a child under the age of 13 is falsely imprisoned and in the course of committing the offense the individual commits aggravated child abuse, sexual battery, lewd and lascivious battery, or commits an act of prostitution or solicitation using the child, the individual committing the offense will have committed a life felony punishable by 25 years imprisonment up to life.
As mentioned above, though this is a hotly prosecuted crime, it is the propensity for it to be linked to more serious and victim related offenses that engages the interest of law enforcement. Almost always in a false imprisonment investigation does law enforcement interview the suspect for other charges and they will generally poll family members regarding the same. As discussed above, it has been our firm’s experience that if an investigation involves a false imprisonment charge, that is often the tip of the iceberg as it relates to the whole of the criminal allegation.How Can We Help?
The lawyers at The Mayberry Law Firm have defended individuals accused of these allegations on many occasions. We know the strategies prosecutors use when prosecuting this crime and we know the defenses available to our client. We understand the political nature of certain criminal allegations and how that, and media coverage can affect the defense of these claims. Each Tampa criminal lawyer in our office is well versed in applicable case law detailing what is and is not to be considered false imprisonment and we use that in our everyday practice in mounting a defense for our clients. Whether it’s a pretrial motion to get your case dismissed or a case investigation in preparation for trial, each Tampa criminal attorney in our firm is dedicated to your defense. When a false imprisonment charge is levied against you or a loved one, now is not the time to delay. Contact the Mayberry Law Firm immediately for a free consultation to see how we can help you through this troublesome time.