Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer / Firefighter / Paramedic

The Law Office of John M. Howe, West Palm Beach

Law Enforcement Officer BatteryIf you have been charged with a felony or misdemeanor by either the state or federal government, contact expert criminal defense team at the Law Office John M. Howe. We have  the experience, knowledge, and resources to effectively defend you against criminal charges. Securing the services of a high quality criminal defense firm can save you months or years of anguish.

A leader in the criminal defense and legal communities, Mr. Howe has served as Past-President for both the Palm Beach County Bar Association and the Palm Beach Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He served as director of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and currently serves on its executive committee.

Law Enforcement Officer Battery

Statutes regarding assault or battery of law enforcement officers, firefighters, emergency medical care providers, public transit employees or agents, or other specified officers; reclassification of offenses; minimum sentences 784.07.

(1) As used in this section, the term:

(a) “Emergency medical care provider” means an ambulance driver, emergency medical technician, paramedic, registered nurse, physician as defined in s. 401.23, medical director as defined in s. 401.23, or any person authorized by an emergency medical service licensed under chapter 401 who is engaged in the performance of his or her duties. The term “emergency medical care provider” also includes physicians, employees, agents, or volunteers of hospitals as defined in chapter 395, who are employed, under contract, or otherwise authorized by a hospital to perform duties directly associated with the care and treatment rendered by the hospital’s emergency department or the security thereof.

(b) “Firefighter” means any person employed by any public employer of this state whose duty it is to extinguish fires; to protect life or property; or to enforce municipal, county, and state fire prevention codes, as well as any law pertaining to the prevention and control of fires.

(c) “Law enforcement explorer” means any person who is a current member of a law enforcement agency’s explorer program and who is performing functions other than those required to be performed by sworn law enforcement officers on behalf of a law enforcement agency while under the direct physical supervision of a sworn officer of that agency and wearing a uniform that bears at least one patch that clearly identifies the law enforcement agency that he or she represents.

(d) “Law enforcement officer” includes a law enforcement officer, a correctional officer, a correctional probation officer, a part-time law enforcement officer, a part-time correctional officer, an auxiliary law enforcement officer, and an auxiliary correctional officer, as those terms are respectively defined in s. 943.10, and any county probation officer; an employee or agent of the Department of Corrections who supervises or provides services to inmates; an officer of the Parole Commission; a federal law enforcement officer as defined in s. 901.1505; and law enforcement personnel of the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission or the Department of Law Enforcement.

(e) “Public transit employees or agents” means bus operators, train operators, revenue collectors, security personnel, equipment maintenance personnel, or field supervisors, who are employees or agents of a transit agency as described in s. 812.015(1)(l).

(2) Whenever any person is charged with knowingly committing an assault or battery upon a law enforcement officer, a firefighter, an emergency medical care provider, a traffic accident investigation officer as described in s. 316.640, a nonsworn law enforcement agency employee who is certified as an agency inspector, blood alcohol analyst, or a breath test operator while such employee is in uniform and engaged in processing, testing, evaluating, analyzing, or transporting a person who is detained or under arrest for DUI, a traffic infraction enforcement officer as described in s. 316.640, a parking enforcement specialist as defined in s. 316.640, a person licensed as a security officer as defined in s. 493.6101 and wearing a uniform that bears at least one patch or emblem that is visible at all times that clearly identifies the employing agency and that clearly identifies the person as a licensed security officer, or a security officer employed by the board of trustees of a community college, while the officer, firefighter, emergency medical care provider, intake officer, traffic accident investigation officer, traffic infraction enforcement officer, inspector, analyst, operator, parking enforcement specialist, public transit employee or agent, or security officer is engaged in the lawful performance of his or her duties, the offense for which the person is charged shall be reclassified as follows:

(a) In the case of assault, from a misdemeanor of the second degree to a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(b) In the case of battery, from a misdemeanor of the first degree to a felony of the third degree.

(c) In the case of aggravated assault, from a felony of the third degree to a felony of the second degree. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person convicted of aggravated assault upon a law enforcement officer shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of 3 years.

(d) In the case of aggravated battery, from a felony of the second degree to a felony of the first degree. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person convicted of aggravated battery of a law enforcement officer shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of 5 years.

(3) Any person who is convicted of a battery under paragraph (2)(b) and, during the commission of the offense, such person possessed:

(a) A “firearm” or “destructive device” as those terms are defined in s. 790.001, shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of 3 years.

(b) A semiautomatic firearm and its high-capacity detachable box magazine, as defined in s. 775.087(3), or a machine gun as defined in s. 790.001, shall be sentenced to a minimum term of imprisonment of 8 years.

Notwithstanding s. 948.01, adjudication of guilt or imposition of sentence shall not be suspended, deferred, or withheld, and the defendant is not eligible for statutory gain-time under s. 944.275 or any form of discretionary early release, other than pardon or executive clemency, or conditional medical release under s. 947.149, prior to serving the minimum sentence.

Contact South Florida Criminal Defense Attorney John M. Howe

To discuss how we will fight to protect your rights, contact the Law Office of John M. Howe by filling out our online form, or by calling 561-296-7772 or toll-free 866-930-2938. During your first meeting, Mr. Howe will examine your case and determine the best way help you fight the charges you are facing for an assault on a law enforcement officer.

 

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