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Tampa Bay Criminal Defense Lawyers

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If you are facing criminal charges, you need to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney.  Contact us for a free and confidential consultation.

After an arrest, please don’t make the mistake of trying to fight the case on your own. Criminal cases are full of complex procedures and nuances, and you’ll need the help of a criminal defense lawyer who can help you handle what’s next for you in the legal system.

Here’s how the process typically works. After an incident, there will be an investigation into what type of crime may have occurred. The prosecutor will decide whether charges will be filed and you may be arrested.

After charges are filed, the first court date is known as your arraignment date and you’ll present your plea of guilty or not guilty. If you plead not guilty, the case will be set for a pre-trial conference. You and your attorney will meet with the judge and the prosecuting attorney in a courtroom to discuss the basic facts of the case.

Sometimes the case is resolved at this point. Other times, there may be a change of plea and/or the case would proceed to a trial. At trial, the prosecutor would present evidence against you and give you a chance to make a defense.

The quality of your defense affects what happens next, including what the judge decides and your potential consequences like jail time. You’ll need an experienced attorney who can help guide you through this complicated process and protect your rights.

If you’re in the Tampa Bay area, turn to Kemp, Ruge & Green. We truly care about representing local people who are facing criminal charges.

You Deserve a Great Team

Here’s what our clients are saying about us:

5-Star Review

“And that’s a wrap!! Case closed! I couldn’t be more happy with my experience! Stephanie Medlin, the wonderful, the great, the empowering paralegal is my spirit animal! She’s amazing! She kept in contact like clockwork, every 3 weeks, keeping me going even at the hardest of times. She is the best! They are very lucky to have her and so am I, as I’ve gained a beautiful friend. You’d think it’s kind of weird to say “I’m sad” and “I’m gonna miss her” regarding a personal injury lawsuit that no one wants to even go through, but it’s the truth! They have a special way of handling each and every client. I will absolutely stay in contact with Stephanie… She’s stuck with me! Attorney Kelly Cook is also such a sweetheart and very good at her craft. It was very easy working with them. They’re very attentive, not pushy, respectful, and work for you, not the other way around! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! A thank you to the entire firm is warranted, as well. They’ve got it all together! Keep it up!! Sincerely one of your many happy clients! ”

-Meghan Fancher

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You Deserve Answers

If you’re facing criminal charges, you want answers about what will happen next. To discuss your specific situation please contact the lawyers at Kemp, Ruge & Green for a free and confidential consultation.

Here are some common types of criminal charges in Tampa Bay and what it might mean for your future if you’re found guilty of these crimes.

DUI

Driving under the influence (DUI) refers to operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, a chemical, or a controlled substance. In Florida, you can be charged with DUI if a breathalyzer test shows you have a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or above or if you refuse to take the breathalyzer test.

DUI can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony in Florida, depending on the circumstances at the scene, whether you hurt someone, and your arrest history. DUI’s are a big deal. Even a first offense can result in a $500 fine and six months in jail.

Juvenile Offenses

Under Florida law, someone under the age of 18 who has committed a crime can face harsh consequences including fines, community service, jail time, or even prison time if the case is moved to adult court. This includes crimes like vandalism, robbery, burglary, assault, drug charges, and sex crimes.

The child’s parents or guardians may also be ordered to share the burden of punishment. Judges sometimes take a hard line on juvenile crimes in order to discourage children from breaking the law in the future.

Traffic Offenses

Don’t ignore a traffic ticket in Florida. Traffic offenses can quickly build up and follow you for decades, ruining your record and affecting your life. Fees compound over time and increase your insurance costs significantly. You could even lose your driver’s license or be given jail time by a judge.

Theft

A theft conviction can come with fines and jail time, plus it will show up every time a potential employer runs a background check. You could be denied a state licensing or certification and may not qualify for any job that involves trust and integrity.

A felony theft conviction could easily land you in jail. Even after serving your time, it could be difficult to repair the relationships and broken trust that occurred due to your crime.

Assault and Battery

A conviction for a violent crime can follow you for the rest of your life and severely limit your options. It could affect your future employment opportunities or even interfere with a child custody agreement.

Jail time is common for people convicted of violent crimes. If the charge involves a police officer, elderly person, pregnant woman, or child, your penalties could be even harsher. You’ll need the expert help of a criminal defense attorney.

Violations of Probation

If you are on probation and violate the terms laid out by the court, you are risking jail time. Seek legal advice if you fail a court-ordered drug test, miss a court-ordered class or community service, forget to pay your probation fees, don’t show up for an appointment with your probation officer, or otherwise break the terms of your probation.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence is a complex issue that always has multiple sides to the story. In legal terms, it can include any type of threat or actual violence against a husband, boyfriend, wife, girlfriend, child, or another family member.

Although we tend to think of physical violence, domestic abuse can also take the form of verbal abuse, emotional abuse, threats of violence, stalking, child abuse, and sexual abuse. A domestic violence conviction can result in jail time, anger management classes, and other penalties.

Drug Offenses

Florida has seen a rise in drug offenses and they have become harshly-prosecuted violations. Even a first-offense drug possession could land you in jail, bring a large fine, and require you to attend rehabilitation/drug counseling sessions. If you are accused of a drug crime, seek experienced legal representation immediately.

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You Deserve Kemp, Ruge & Green

When you choose Kemp, Ruge & Green, for your criminal defense, you work with a law firm that is known throughout Tampa Bay for its toughness in representing its clients. You can face the legal system with an experienced lawyer by your side.

If you have been accused of a crime or arrested in Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough, Hernando, St. Petersburg, Spring Hill, Tarpon Springs, or another community in Tampa Bay, you can trust us with your case. We’re the local law firm with a stellar reputation for providing excellent criminal defense.

Your initial criminal defense consultation is free and confidential. Let’s talk about your case and take a bold step together toward protecting your future.

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