Criminal Defense Law Firm For An Arrest For False Imprisonment in Fort Walton Beach, Destin Or Anywhere In Okaloosa County
In Florida, we frequently see the violent felony offenses of False Imprisonment & Kidnapping charged in correlation with a Domestic Violence Case.
This is because under Florida Statutes, Section 787.01 and 787.02 respectively, the elements of Kidnapping and False Imprisonment are somewhat vague and ambiguous.
False Imprisonment And Ties To Kidnapping & Domestic Violence Charges
False Imprisonment is found under section 787.02 of the Florida Statutes and is defined as a crime that occurs when a defendant “forcibly, by threat, or secretly confining, abducting, imprisoning, or restraining another person without lawful authority and against her or his will.” F.S. 787.02(1)(a).
This charge is categorized as a third degree felony and is punishable by up to FIVE years in prison and a $5,000.00 fine (F.S. 775.82, 775.083, 775.084). Additionally, False Imprisonment is almost always charged with another criminal offense, usually Domestic Violence Battery, Aggravated Assault, or even a Sex Related Crime.
For Kidnapping, which is generally charged as a first-degree felony punishable by life (PBL), the State prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt the following:
That the Defendant, with no lawful authority to do so, intentionally and forcibly abducted, confined, or imprisoned the victim against their will.
It sounds almost exactly as False Imprisonment, but there are a few differences: The intention of the Defendant must be related to one of the following circumstances in order to be considered “Kidnapping” pursuant to Florida Law:
1. Holding the victim for ransom or reward or in a hostage situation.
2. To facilitate the commission of another felony crime.
3. To inflict bodily harm upon or to terrorize.
4. Interfering with a governmental function.
Further, the criminal action must not be considered slight, inconsequential, or merely incidental to a related felony charge. The “kidnapping” must have independent significance in that it makes the related charge (robbery, theft, burglary, fleeing and eluding, etc.) substantially easier to commit, (or escape.)
If you have been arrested for false imprisonment in Fort Walton Beach, Destin, or elsewhere in Okaloosa County, I am available to advise you on course of action for your case. The initial consultation is free so don’t hesitate to call.