28th Mar 2017
Individuals who are facing charges of fleeing a police officer may reach out to a criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale. The base offense is charged when a person who is driving a vehicle on a street or highway in the state willfully refuses to stop a vehicle after being ordered to do so by a law enforcement officer knowing that the officer has made this directive. However, a criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale can explain that there may be more serious consequences imposed if aggravating circumstances exist.
Siren and Lights Activated
One aggravating circumstance is if the law enforcement officer had his or her vehicle siren and lights activated. This aggravating circumstance can arise when the law enforcement vehicle bore agency insignia and these marks were prominently displayed on the vehicle as the siren and lights were on.
If the defendant drove at high speeds or in a manner that demonstrates a wanton disregard for the safety of others or property, the defendant may face even more significant criminal consequences.
Causing Serious Bodily Injury or Death
If the defendant was fleeing a police officer in a dangerous manner that resulted in the death of another person or the serious injury of another person, the defendant will likely face a more serious penalty.
The base offense carries a potential maximum penalty of five years in prison, driver’s license suspension, five years of probation and a $5,000 fine. However, aggravating circumstances can result in up to fifteen years imprisonment, fifteen years of probation, a maximum of five years of a driver’s license suspension and up to $10,000 in fines.