70-Year-Old Veteran Protected by Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law

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Tampa criminal law firm Thomas & Paulk, P.A. recently helped a 71-year-old veteran protect himself against charges of aggravated assault by seeking immunity under the Stand Your Ground law.

Thomas & Paulk, P.A.

If it had not been for Florida's Stand Your Ground law it is possible that a seventy-year-old decorated American hero would have had to face trial for protecting himself from two twenty-year-old men with a bad case of road rage.

On August 6, 2013, Tampa Criminal Attorney Jeff Thomas of Thomas & Paulk helped a 71-year-old decorated military veteran to get charges of aggravated assault completely dismissed (Case No. 12-CF-016226, Hillsborough County Circuit Court). Per Attorney Thomas, the veteran—who had no prior criminal record—was driving home from a matinee movie when two men in their twenties began to follow him, claiming that the older man had cut them off in traffic. The veteran later stated that he did not want them following him, so he turned off the road. When he discovered that the road was a dead end, he stopped his car.

Per court documents, the two younger men then got out of their car and walked up to the veteran’s vehicle. The veteran—who is a concealed carry permit holder—did not want to be stuck in his car so he got out with his firearm for protection. At this point, the two men called law enforcement and claimed the veteran had been threatening them with a firearm. The man was then arrested and charged with felony aggravated assault with a firearm—a criminal charge that could lead to a three year minimum prison sentence.

Following arrest, the veteran turned to the criminal defense team of Thomas & Paulk to help protect his legal rights. Attorney Jeff Thomas was the attorney on the case; he immediately began to investigate the details of the case and deposed all of the witnesses. Upon realizing that the veteran was simply trying to protect himself, he chose to file a motion to seek immunity from prosecution under Florida’s Stand Your Ground law.

"Stand Your Ground has received quite a bit of bad press recently,” said Attorney Jeff Thomas. “But it is important for people to understand that many times it offers protections for people who are exercising their Second Amendment rights to protect themselves from harm."

At the hearing on the motion, Thomas & Paulk was able to prove that the veteran had been afraid of the damage that the two younger men could cause him. During deposition, the two younger men also admitted that they had intended to fight the older man and were only deterred because of the firearm. The Judge who was overseeing the case determined that the veteran had no duty to retreat and that he deserved to benefit from the protection of Florida’s Stand Your Ground law. All charges were thus completely dismissed.

According to Attorney Thomas, "If it had not been for Florida's Stand Your Ground law it is possible that a seventy-year-old decorated American hero would have had to face trial for protecting himself from two twenty-year-old men with a bad case of road rage."

Thomas & Paulk, P.A. is a criminal defense law firm located in Tampa, Florida. Their firm has more than twenty years’ combined experience and has handled more than 7,000 criminal cases ranging from aggravated assault to drunk driving. To learn more about how the criminal defense team from their firm can help, do not hesitate to contact them today at 813-321-7323 or visit them online at http://www.tampacriminalattorneys.com.

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Jeff Thomas
@ThomasPaulkPA
since: 07/2012
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