Violent Crimes Lawyer in Palmetto If you or a loved one was arrested for or charged with a violent crime, we can help build your legal defense.

When you are arrested for or charged with a violent crime, it is important to build a defense as early as possible. In some cases, we can intervene before charges are formalized. At Goldman Wetzel, we can support you through the litigation process. Your story matters. We will listen closely to your description of what occurred and review the evidence to create your defense strategy.

Attorneys Summer Goldman and Maribeth Wetzel have backgrounds in the prosecutor’s office and as a career defense attorney, respectively. When you hire Goldman Wetzel, you gain our combined experience as we build your defense case from start to finish. Call us today for a free consultation at (941) 405-5193 with a violent crimes lawyer in Palmetto, FL.

The Qualities of a Violent Crime

For a crime to be legally defined as violent, there must be actual violence or the threat of physical harm to a person. The following offenses can constitute violent crimes in the state of Florida:

  • Homicide
  • Robbery
  • Assault
  • Battery
  • Kidnapping
  • Child abuse
  • Conspiracy to commit a violent crime

This list is not exhaustive, and every case is unique. If you or a loved one was arrested for or charged with any of these offenses, Goldman Wetzel can support you through the judicial process. Call our office at (941) 405-5193 today to get started with a free consultation.

What We Can Do for You

Not all violent crime cases go to trial—it all depends on the severity of the alleged crime.  When you contact Goldman Wetzel, we can help articulate your defense clearly and quickly.

Our strategy for violent crime defense cases is to learn the details of what happened and why you were arrested. We go beyond “by the book” practices when representing you in court. We may challenge your arrest by reviewing police conduct at the scene of the incident or by interviewing key witnesses that may offer a unique perspective. From there, we can work to build a case that protects your rights and holds the prosecution accountable for meeting the high burden of proof the state requires of it.

Crimes in Manatee County

Violent crimes are classified as either misdemeanors or felonies by the Manatee County Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller and are handled by different courts. These classifications carry different potential penalties upon conviction, but both should be taken seriously.


Misdemeanors are under the jurisdiction of the Manatee County Court. According to the Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller, misdemeanor violent crimes include but are not limited to battery, disorderly conduct. Defendants charged with or arrested for a violent misdemeanor crime risk being fined, put on probation, and incarcerated.


Felony crimes are more severe than misdemeanors, and they fall under the jurisdiction of the Circuit Court. Felony convictions can carry penalties that include significant fines and prison sentences. Having a felony on your record can also affect your ability to find a job, housing, or educational opportunities. Felony crimes include but are not limited to, aggravated battery, felony battery, sexual battery, and murder.

Legal Defenses Related to Violent Crime

Goldman Wetzel understands that no one wants the burden of dealing with a violent crime charge. There are several possible defenses for violent crimes, which depend upon the nature of your specific situation. Each case is unique, but defenses may include:

  • Self-defense: Florida statute 012 states that use or threatened use of force against another person is justified when using such force is meant to prevent death or injury.
  • Consent: Some people who are charged or arrested in sexual battery cases may be able to prove that there was consent. Florida statutory rape law dictates that the age of sexual consent is 18, with closer ages in exemptions for minors aged 16 or 17.
  • Mental incapacitation or insanity: Insanity is a recognized defense in criminal court cases. Florida follows the M’Naghten Rule that sets a precedent for proving that one’s mental condition was impaired, diseased, or defective. The defense must prove:
    1. The defendant did not understand what he was doing or the consequences or
    2. Although he knew what he was doing, he did not know it was wrong.
  • Involuntary intoxication: Voluntary intoxication is not a defense to a criminal charge in Florida. However, involuntary intoxication can impact your mental state and become a negotiable factor in a violent criminal defense case.
  • False accusation: We may be able to provide evidence that shows you could not have committed the crime in question by means of a strong alibi.
  • Police misconduct: If the police did not follow all of the proper rules and procedures when arresting you or collecting evidence against you, we may be able to have your charges reduced or dismissed, or the evidence removed from consideration.

These are not the only defenses that may be available to you. There are other ways our team can create a solid argument in your defense. To find out more about what instances may apply to your case, contact a violent crimes lawyer in Palmetto, FL, from Goldman Wetzel today.

Criminal History Is Not Always Permanent

The results of a criminal arrest or charge can have a permanent and negative impact on your life. In certain instances, your case can be sealed or expunged according to the requirements of Florida statutes 943.0585 and 943.059. Goldman Wetzel understands that every case is different and can discuss the nuances of your case to see if you qualify.

Consult Goldman Wetzel Today

The lawyers at Goldman Wetzel are passionate about defending your rights and making sure law enforcement follows appropriate procedures before, during, and after the judicial process. Our background in both defense and prosecution makes our team uniquely qualified to help you seek a favorable outcome.

If you or a loved one was charged with or arrested for a violent crime, we can help. Call Goldman Wetzel today for a free consultation with a violent crimes lawyer in Palmetto, FL, at (941) 405-5193.