Whether you’re facing violent crime charges like murder or manslaughter, or domestic violent charges stemming from a verbal altercation turned physical, there’s a lot on the line in your case. Given that a criminal conviction can threaten you with prison time and a criminal record that can severely damage your life, you should think about the best path for your criminal defense. And you might have several defense options available to you. One of them might be self-defense.
Florida’s self-defense law
Under Florida law, you might be justified in using physical force to defend yourself. In order to do so legally, though, you have to show that you had a reasonable belief that using that force was necessary against another individual’s imminent use of unlawful force. You are not required to flee before using this force to defend yourself, which is why Florida’s self-defense law is often referred to as “stand your ground” law. Even deadly force might be justifiable if it is necessary to protect yourself from the risk of imminent death or great bodily harm and you’re otherwise acting legally.
This law might seem pretty straightforward, but self-defense can be a challenging argument to make in court. This is because as an affirmative defense, the burden is on you to show that your actions were justified by the law. This means you’ll have to spend a lot of time building arguments that demonstrate that your belief that the force about to be used against you was reasonable in light of the circumstances.
Fully vet your criminal defense options
While self-defense might be a strong criminal defense option for you, it may or may not be best for your set of circumstances. That’s why it’s imperative that you know all of your options. Only then can you make the fully informed decision that is best for you and maximizes your chances of achieving the best outcome possible under the circumstances.