Your intention when you commit an act that is against the law can make all the difference if you are convicted and sentenced. Under Florida law, carjacking is defined as taking control of someone’s vehicle when without their consent. If you commit this act by force, the stakes go up. In a court of law, the pivotal point may come down to whether or not the owner felt he was in danger. If the owner gave up his car because he thought you might hurt him if he didn’t, this is carjacking. But what if you thought you had his consent? What if it was an emergency, a life-or-death situation, and you needed a vehicle? No case is ever cut-and-dried or wholly dependent on the unemotional technicalities of the law. Sometimes there may be extenuating circumstances and mitigating factors.
If you have been accused of carjacking, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney to make sure the prosecutor and the court know why you did what you did. You will face a felony charge if you are convicted of carjacking. Carjacking is classified as a robbery offense; meaning you could face life in prison if you had a weapon on you at the time. Even if you did not have a weapon on you at the time of the incident, you could still be looking at up to 30 years of incarceration. You need a qualified and experienced criminal defense attorney to make sense of the particular factors involved in your case and bring them to the attention of the court. Your reason for taking someone’s vehicle and the circumstances involved can potentially decrease your penalties so you do not spend the rest of your life in jail – but only if you have an experienced and aggressive attorney by your side to be sure it makes a difference. If you do go to jail, how long you have to stay there is a huge consideration. A qualified attorney can make sure you have a parole hearing sooner rather than later.
If you have been charged with carjacking, or even if you think you might be, contact an Orlando criminal defense attorney who has been down this road before and who can identify the factors that might make a difference in your case. You have legal rights. Reach out to a law firm that knows what they are and who knows how to use them in your favor.