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Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer

Jacksonville lawyer Bill Roelke defends both adults and juveniles in the Florida justice system. As his client, you will be treated respectfully and with compassion, regardless of your background or circumstances. Bill believes establishing a good rapport with you often reveals subtle details which can make big differences in your case.

Criminal Defense Representation Overview

Whether you have been arrested for the first time for a misdemeanor offense or you are a repeat offender accused of committing a felony, you are well-advised to contact a private criminal defense attorney. Contacting an experienced private criminal attorney with expertise in Florida law as soon as possible after your arrest is vital to protecting your rights, regardless of whether you reside in the state or you are here on vacation or for business.

We provide superior representation with a focus on attention to detail in the following kinds of cases:

Alcohol or Marijuana DUI

In Florida, to convict you of DUI, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that at the time of the offense you were under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or other drugs to the extent your “normal faculties” were impaired. “Normal faculties” includes your ability to walk, talk, exercise judgment, drive a car and perform everyday life activities. The charges you may face for DUI depends upon numerous factors, including whether you have previously been convicted of DUI, whether there is property damage, and whether others were seriously or fatally injured. Critically, just because you may have “failed” the standardized field sobriety exercises, had a high breath alcohol level or had the presence of marijuana or other drugs in your system doesn’t mean your charges can’t be dropped or reduced. And, you can also challenge your license suspension in an administrative proceeding, but you must do so within 10 days of your arrest. Retaining an experienced Jacksonville DUI attorney is the best way to avoid losing your license and being saddled with a stigmatizing DUI conviction for the rest of your life.

Drug Crimes

Under Florida law it is illegal for you to sell, manufacture, or deliver, or possess with intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver a controlled substance. Controlled substances in Florida include drugs for which you do not have prescription, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin and methadone, pills such as Xanax and Oxycodone and “designer” or synthetic drugs like K2 and Spice. It is also illegal to possess paraphernalia related to any controlled substance or illegal drug. In addition to criminalizing possession of controlled substances, it is also illegal in Florida to engage in conspiracy to commit drug crimes or to engage in drug trafficking. In addition to the regular punishments such as jail and prison sentences and probation, Florida law also provides for severe additional penalties including lengthy mandatory minimum sentences, drivers license suspensions, large fines and forfeiture of any property used or obtained in connection with your drug activity, including your money, your home and your automobiles and boats. If you’re suspected of having engaged in drug activities, make sure you contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer to help you avoid these severe, life-altering sanctions.

Domestic Violence

Hitting someone or threatening to do so can have serious consequences. Additionally, if a person is under the belief that an individual may hurt them or is harassing them, that person can seek relief from the court in the form of an injunction for protection against domestic violence, dating violence, sexual violence, repeat violence or stalking, as applicable. Hiring an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Jacksonville can help you assess your options whether you wish to file an injunction for protection or an injunction has been filed against you. Although civil in nature, having an injunction on your record can interfere with your abilities to secure employment, professional licenses and background checks. Therefore, if an injunction has been filed against you, it’s important for you to contact a domestic violence / stalking injunction attorney to maximize your chances of having the injunction dismissed.

Violent Crimes

Violent crimes involve the use, or threatened use, of force and brutality. They encompass numerous offenses including assault, battery, false imprisonment, kidnapping, robbery and homicide. While some violent crime offenses are misdemeanors, most are felonies which can result in prison sentences, fines, and probation upon completion of criminal sentences. If you were in possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime, you will face enhanced penalties, regardless of whether you actually used that weapon. If you’ve been accused of committing a violent crime, an experienced criminal defense attorney can identify possible defenses or mitigating circumstances, such as self-defense, to help get your charges dropped or reduced or to otherwise lessen the consequences to you.

Sex Crimes

Common sex crimes include sexual battery, lewd or lascivious acts, and unlawful sex with minors. Sex crime charges are vigorously prosecuted by the State of Florida. Depending on the nature of the offense and the age of the victim, persons charged with sex crimes are usually facing several years of prison if convicted. In addition to substantial prison terms, persons convicted of sex crimes are usually required to complete lengthy terms of probation following their prison term. Sex offender probation usually includes curfews, restrictions on internet access and usage, no contact with minors, periodic sexual history polygraphs and psychosexual evaluation and treatment. If you’ve been accused of committing a sex crime, it’s best to retain a criminal defense attorney in Jacksonville who has substantial experience with sex crime prosecutions.

Theft Crimes

In Florida a person commits theft if they knowingly obtain someone else’s property with the intent to temporarily or permanently deprive the other person of a right to the property or a benefit from the property. Whether a theft is charged as a felony or a misdemeanor and the associated penalties depends on the value of the property at issue. In many cases, the charge of theft arises from an accident or a misunderstanding that leads to the filing of a police report. Regardless of the nature of the incident, Florida takes theft prosecutions seriously, so if you’ve been arrested on suspicion of theft you will be best served by contacting an experienced criminal defense lawyer.

Property Crimes

Arson, criminal mischief, burglary, and dealing in stolen goods are all Florida property crimes. In essence they involve the taking or destruction of, or the unlawful entry upon, someone else’s property. Some people are under the false impression that because property crime is quite common, state prosecutors don’t take such crimes seriously. They are wrong. Conviction of property crimes may result in severe punishment and a felony conviction. Whether charged as an adult or as a juvenile, if you’re charged with a second-degree misdemeanor or a first-degree felony property crime, hiring the right Jacksonville criminal defense attorney is important to protect your future.

White Collar Crimes

White collar crimes are non-violent felony offenses where you intend to commit fraud or deprive a person of their property, or you are involved in a conspiracy to commit such crimes. These types of crimes typically are committed for financial gain. Common white-collar crimes include credit card fraud, insurance fraud, Medicaid fraud, embezzlement, forgery, and money laundering. The penalties for white collar crimes in Florida can be substantial, depending on the nature of the crime and the amount of money involved. White collar crime cases are typically document intensive. A methodical and precise review of voluminous records is usually required. Oftentimes a thorough review of your matter reveals the government’s case is based on erroneous information or inaccurate conclusions. Other times our case review indicates the issues arose from good faith mistakes on the part of our clients. If you’ve been charged with a fraud-based or other financial crime, it’s important to engage a Jacksonville criminal fraud attorney to thoroughly investigate your case to ensure you are not wrongfully convicted.

Gun Crimes

Gun crimes include possession of a firearm or ammunition by a convicted felon, carrying a concealed weapon, and the improper exhibition of a dangerous weapon or firearm. Fines and length of incarceration vary in instances in which a person is in possession of a gun illegally, whether or not the weapon was discharged in the course of committing a crime. An individual convicted previously of various gun crimes can face more severe penalties. A person with a license to carry a concealed weapon may still run afoul of the law if the firearm in question was displayed in an angry or threatening manner. A second category of gun crimes in Florida are referred to as “firearm enhancements.” In these cases the sentence for another crime may be enhanced because a weapon or firearm was used in committing that crime. An example of a weapons enhancement law is the 10-20-Life law, which imposes increasing mandatory minimum sentences depending on whether a firearm is carried or discharged during the commission of a violent crime and whether there is victim injury or death. If you’ve been arrested for a gun crime, it’s in your best interest to contact a criminal defense attorney experienced with such crimes.

Juvenile Crimes

Offenses committed by your minor child should not be treated lightly or dismissed. An arrest of your child for a juvenile crime can have unfortunate consequences for their future educational and career opportunities. It therefore is very important if your child has been charged with a crime that they be represented by an experienced Jacksonville juvenile criminal attorney. An experienced juvenile crimes attorney will know both how to navigate the special juvenile court procedures and how to prevent your child from being sent off to complete an extensive juvenile program so they can instead stay at home and attend their normal school. In more severe cases, your child’s lawyer can sometimes prevent the State from “direct filing” charges against your child in adult court where the penalties are more severe and your child could be subject to a prison sentence in adult facilities, which lack specialized counseling and educational resources available in juvenile facilities, and where children are often subjected to abuse and violence. Further, unlike juvenile court records, which are sealed automatically once a person enters their mid-20s, an adult felony conviction marks a child for life.

Traffic Crimes

There are two basic types of traffic tickets in Florida: moving violations and nonmoving violations. Moving violations occur when you fail to follow traffic laws while your vehicle is in motion. Moving violations include speeding, running a red light or texting while driving. Non-moving violations are infractions that occur when your vehicle is at rest. Examples include illegal parking, expired plates or equipment-related violations such as a broken taillight. Some people view traffic crimes as inconsequential or just something that can be cleared up by paying a fine. A person with a number of offenses, however, can find themselves quickly losing the ability to operate a vehicle legally in Florida, given the state’s mandated system for assigning points for various driving infractions. Hiring an attorney with a successful record of defending drivers in traffic cases is a good first step to keeping your driving privileges intact.

Contact a Jacksonville Lawyer Today

If you or a loved one has been arrested on a criminal charge, now is the time to begin preparing the strongest possible defense. Call Bill Roelke to get your free, confidential case strategy session to help you understand the charges you face and the possible outcomes in your case. Call (904) 354-0333 or send an online message to take the important first step in obtaining the best possible outcome for your case and your future.

Meet William Roelke

Clients who work with Bill know they’re not hiring just any lawyer. Bill brings his unique background and experience in biomedical science to help address the numerous psychological, scientific and medical issues frequently present in matters such as DUI, drug possession, theft crimes, battery and sex crimes. Bill also offers clients in fraud ...
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Jacksonville Criminal Defense Attorney Blog

Client Reviews

I originally hired a trial attorney for my case who was very expensive. My friend recommended William Roelke and I hired him instead for my case. He reviewed my case carefully and all the presented evidence I provided. What I like about this attorney is prompt responses to my inquires, detailed...

Simir S.

Mr. William Roelke is outstanding. Beyond comparison, marvelous is the display of his craft. His professional demeanor and wonderful insight is amazing. Mr. Roelke has superior character and insight. Should you be in need of services, please don’t hesitate to engage, Mr. William Roelke. Simply The...

Frederick K.

What a pleasure to have Mr. Roelke in your corner! I have been very impressed from my first contact with Bill. He was very prompt to return my initial phone call, and he has always been forthright about our case options, and the advice given. Very calm and highly competent. He accomplished every...

Kevin B.

William Roelke is an experienced, ethical, well prepared, well educated, top notch attorney. I give William Roelke my highest recommendation. He guided our family through a complex set of charges, communicated with us on a regular basis, represented us well and the result....all charges dismissed...

Carol F.

I am very glad to have contacted William Roelke about my case. William was very professional, calm and well-spoken; I felt very comfortable doing business with him and I am more than pleased to say that my charges have been dropped. I highly recommend Roelke Law, William will surely take good care...

Jhon D.

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