AGGRAVATED FLEEING OR ATTEMPTING TO ELUDE A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
MANDATORY CONVICTION !!
This means that a person found guilty at trial or pleas to this charge will be a convicted felon!
MANDATORY CONVICTION DRIVER’S LICENSE SUSPENSION FOR 1 -5 YEARS !!
This means that the judge must suspend the driver’s license of anyone who pleas to this charge or are found guilty in a court of law at their trial !
Fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer is a very serious criminal offense with severe mandatory penalties. The only way to avoid these mandatory sentences is to get them dismissed, be found not guilty, or having an experienced criminal attorney like me negotiate a plea to a different charge so the penalties do not have to be imposed. Call me now for more information about Florida criminal statute 316.1935.
Fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer has become one of the more popular charges by which a person becomes a convicted felon. Recently, people have increasingly been arrested for this criminal charge by cops and deputies. Prosecutors are also filing this crime more often due to the penalties.
3rd degree felony
Fleeing or attempting to elude makes it unlawful for the operator of any vehicle, knowing that the person has been ordered to stop by an authorized law enforcement officer, willfully refuse or fail to stop their vehicle. In addition, it is illegal if, after having stopped in compliance with the officer’s order, the person willfully flees in an attempt to elude the police officer or deputy. Violation of this criminal statute is a felony of the 3rd degree punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a $5,000.00 fine. Even though, this crime is only a Level 1 offense scoring 4 points as a primary offense, the individual must be adjudicated guilty and become a convicted felon. In addition, the accused person’s driver’s license must be suspended by the court for 1 – 5 years.
2nd degree felony
If the arrested person willfully flees or attempts to elude a police officer or deputy driving in an authorized law enforcement patrol vehicle, with agency insignia and other law enforcement jurisdictional marking prominently displayed on the police vehicle, with the siren and lights activated, the arrested person commits a 2nd degree felony and faces up to 15 years in prison, $10,000.00 fine, and the mandatory penalties requiring the judge to make the individual a convicted felon and suspend their license. This crime is a Level 3 offense and scores 16 points under the Criminal Sentencing Guidelines as a primary offense.
1st or 2nd degree felony
The second degree crime of Fleeing to Elude becomes a a more serious felony if during the course of fleeing or attempting to elude, the arrested person:
- Drives at high speed, or in a manner that demonstrates a wanton disregard for the safety persons or property. The crime is still a 2nd degree felony, but becomes a Level 4 offense and scores 22 points instead of 16 under the Guidelines.
If the accused person allegedly:
- Drives at high speed, or in a manner that demonstrates a wanton disregard for the safety persons or property and causes serious bodily injury or death to another person, including the police officer or sheriff deputy chasing or pursuing them or trying to stop the arrested person’s motor vehicle, commits a felony of the 1st degree felony punishable by up to 30 years in prison and a $15,000.00 fine. This is a Level 7 offense scoring 56 points under the court’s Sentencing Guidelines. In addition, the court must sentence the accused to a minimum mandatory prison sentence of 3 years Florida state prison!!!
AGGRAVATED FLEEING OR ELUDING
The crime of Fleeing to Elude becomes even more sever if the arrested individual allegedly is leaving the scene of an accident or crash involving death or personal injuries or an accident or crash involving property damage, having knowledge of an order to stop by a duly licensed law enforcement officer, willfully fails to stop, or having stopped, willfully flees in an attempt to elude the police officer and as a result of such fleeing:
- Causes injury to another person or damage to any property belonging to another person, then the arrested person commits Aggravated Fleeing or Eluding which is a 2nd degree felony. This is a Level 5 offense and scores 28 points under the Guidelines as a primary criminal offense.
If the accused person allegedly:
- Causes serious bodily injury or death to another person, including any law enforcement officer involved in the pursuing or attempting to stop the motor vehicle, then the arrested person commits Aggravated Fleeing or Eluding with Serious Bodily Injury or Death which is a 1st degree felony. This is a Level 8 offense and scores 74 points under the Guidelines as a primary criminal offense. This charge also carries a 3 year minimum mandatory prison sentence! This does not prevent a judge from sentencing the accused person to more than 3 years in prison.
ANY INDIVIDUAL CONVICTED AND SENTENCED TO A MINIMUM MANDATORY PRISON SENTENCE FOR AGGRAVATED FLEEING OR ATTEMPTING TO ELUDE A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER IS NOT ELIGIBLE FOR ANY GAIN TIME, DISCRETIONARY EARLY RELEASE, OTHER THAN PARDON OR EXECUTIVE CLEMENCY OR CONDITIONAL MEDICAL RELEASE PRIOR TO SERVING THE 3 YEAR MINIMUM MANDATORY PRISON SENTENCE.
Police Officers and Prosecutors like these charges because the statute prevents the judge from withholding adjudication. This means that the defendant will lose there civil rights upon the entering of the sentence. Some of the rights lost include: the right to vote, the right to hold public office, and certain occupational licenses. You can have these rights restored but it is a difficult process.
Finally, to further complicate matters for the defendant, the government has the authority to seize the vehicle as contraband in these cases!
There are many defenses to these charges! There are affirmative and proof problems in these cases. Call immediately to learn if any of these defense are available to you.
Call now to consult with an experienced criminal attorney who has handled these criminal charges before. Learn if you are facing a mandatory 3 year prison sentence. Find out what degree of felony you are facing and whether you are scoring prison time under the Guidelines. Get me working on your case today!
Lakeland, FL (863) 838-5549
Tampa, FL (813) 789-6404
You could face up to a year in a county jail for evading the police.
Defenses For Evading or Fleeing the Police.
- Lacking the Intent to Evade: If you are pulled over by a police vehicle that is not clearly marked as a law enforcement car, your attorney can make the case that you didn’t know you were being pulled over and that you didn’t have the intent of evading the police.
- DUI and Evading Police: While this isn’t necessarily the most ideal option, your attorney could argue that you were intoxicated and therefore could not form the intent to flee. This defense will likely lead to a DUI charge though.
If the circumstances arise where you’re stopped by a police officer, you should avoid disobeying the police officer and comply with their instructions. Resisting arrest or running away from the police officer can get you charged with evading arrest in certain instances.
Evading police of fleeing police is punishable as either a misdemeanor or felony charge that could land you a year in county jail with a maximum fine of up to $1000. The court may also decide to impound your vehicle and suspend your driver’s license.