Shooting or Throwing Deadly Missiles
Shooting or throwing deadly missiles includes a vast array of potential actions. It is not limited to discharging a firearm. For example, we have seen a situation where a law enforcement officer sought a warrant to make an arrest based on a person throwing a Starburst at a police vehicle while the vehicle was in motion. While this may be an extreme example of an overzealous officer, the statute provides plenty of discretion for officers to make arrests based on minimal conduct. If you have a Shooting or Throwing Deadly Missiles case in Jacksonville, Florida, give the experienced criminal defense lawyers of Shorstein, Lasnetski, & Gihon a call to discuss it.
2. You did so at, within, or into,
- shot a firearm, or
- threw a missile, or
- hurled or projected a stone or other hard substance that would produce death or great bodily harm.
3. The act was done wantonly and maliciously.
- a public or private building, occupied or occupied, or
- a public or private bus, or
- a train, locomotive, railway car, caboose, cable railway car, street railway car, monorail car, or vehicle of any kind that was being used or occupied by any person, or
- a boat, vessel, ship, or barge lying in or plying the waters of this state, or
- an aircract flying through the air space of this state.
"Wantonly" means consciously and intentionally, with reckless indifference to consequences and with the knowledge that damage is likely to be done to some person.
"Maliciously" means wrongfully, intentionally, without legal justification or excuse, and with the knowledge that injury or damage will or may be caused to another person or property of another person.
Shooting or Throwing Deadly Missiles is a Second Degree Felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison. Second Degree Felonies usually require an adjudication of guilt, which means that you would become a convicted felon and unable to get your record sealed or expunged, unable to vote, unable to hold public office, unable to possess a firearm or ammunition, and you would incur other collateral consequences of a felony conviction. Criminal defense attorneys will work to avoid these consequences by investigating the case, taking depositions, showing the warts of the case to the prosecutor, attempting to negotiate a lesser offense or to convince the prosecutor to drop the charges, or potentially through a not guilty verdict at trial. There are many different stages of a criminal case and many different potential options for clients to choose from.
The statute requires the State to prove that you shot, threw or hurled the object wantonly or maliciously. The common defense to this statute is to challenge the State's evidence that you acted wantonly or with malice. Another common defense is self defense. There may also be other viable defenses, including lack of ability to identify you, conflicts in the evidence leading to reasonable doubt, or other factual issues that support a verdict of not guilty. Each case is different and defenses will often rely on a dispute in the facts of the case and the lack of evidence or lack of quality of evidence that the State has available.
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