Potentially. My firm offers free case consultations in these matters. Our office number is 813 830 2261. Good luck
This answer does not, nor is it intended to, create an attorney-client relationship or constitute attorney advertising. Rather, it is offered solely for informational purposes. The facts of each case are different and unique, it is critical to consult with qualified counsel with whom information can be shared and assessed under attorney-client privilege, so that competent and quality advice can be obtained on which you can make informed decisions
It sounds like your son may have some mitigating circumstances. You should consult with an attorney asap.
The answer is possibly. There are many unknown factors and variables that will ultimately determine the final plea. Charges of this nature are expensive to defend. Please feel free to call my office for a free phone consultation. I handle white collar defense throughout the state in both state and federal court.
John S Riordan, Esq.
West Palm Beach, FL
John S. Riordan, Esq., is a partner with Kelley, Kronenberg, Gilmartin, Fichtel, Wander, Bamdas, Eskalyo & Dunbrack running the West Palm Beach Criminal Defense and White Collar Crime Division. Mr. Riordan is a former Palm Beach County Prosecutor and an experienced criminal defense lawyer handling cases in both State and Federal Courts throughout Florida. He can be reached at (561) 886-2620 for a free consultation. The answer provided is for educational purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. You should consult an attorney for legal advice regarding the facts of your specific case and designed to help you with your personal needs.
If there are mental health issues his attorney should have him evaluated. The evaluating drs can then testify on his behalf. Also the need for restitution is also a reason for a downward departure. Please see florida statute 921.0026. http://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2012/921.0026
I am a Naples criminal defense attorney. My firm has handled many white collar cases throughout SWFla. You can check my profile and firm site for more info. The answer to your questions is "possibly," as my colleagues have stated. It is harder to give a more definite answer without reviewing the evidence in your son's case and talking to the prosecutor. I assume your son's case was previously in front of Judge Baker? He was a good judge, but fortunately, he has been replaced by another good judge in Judge Manalich. Your son's lack of prior record is a huge help. At 22 he is aweful young but just outside the range for "youthful offender" sanctions. However, as others have mentioned there may be mental mitigation or an actual mental state defense if his illness had something to do with the crime he is accused of. I would be happy to give you a consultation, look at his discovery and visit with him in the jail if you want to contact me. My office is located a block away from the courthouse, around the corner from the jail. My last thought is I wonder if the victim feels the same way about the restitution as the State does?
I am not your lawyer. This answer is general information based on what you laid out in your question and that alone.
In short...sometimes. Private attorneys do not always guarantee a certain result, nor can we ethically guarantee any outcome of any case. I am aware of the situation your son is in. Unfortunately time is not on his side as the case is getting old. As a Naples criminal Defense Attorney, I am happy to offer a free consultation, to speak about how we may be able to assist.
A private attorney will not be able mitigate the State's offer. The fact is, defendant's are not entitled to plea offers. The State can make offers, withdraw offers and up offers at anytime. Typically, the prosecutor will make offers and if they are not accepted within a certain time period, they will withdraw them or up them.
A mental health evaluation will not help with the State's offer. Mitigation at sentencing regarding mental health or your son's ability to appreciate the what he did, (there are many enumerated mitigating factors for judge's to consider), but they really function to allow for possible justification for a downward departure sentence. Your son will have a 'felony score sheet' that will display a minimum permissible sentence. To go below that, you would have to demonstrate the mental issues, etc. Obviously, your son has been charged with a first degree felony. He may have valid defenses, you can call me if you like, I was a former Chief White-Collar crimes prosecutor.