DISCLAIMER: The results are specific to the facts and legal circumstances of each of the clients’ cases and should not be used to form an expectation that the same results could be obtained for other clients in similar matters without reference to the specific factual and legal circumstances of each client’s case.
We got Gary C.’s terrorist threats charge reduced to extortion, which is a sealable crime – meaning, that people won’t see the criminal charge when they pull his record. Getting his charge sealed allowed Gary to continue on with his life without worrying about his career or future.
Gary is a juvenile, and he was worried about having a criminal record or going to jail. Gary is very intelligent and in all honors and AP classes, and was supposed to attend a college program but got kicked out after the incident. Gary was worried that 30 seconds of him making a mistake would screw up the rest of his life and his chance to get a good education and achieve his best future.
Gary was on an open forum app when he posted a comment saying that he was going to attack Patrick Airforce Base in Cocoa Beach, Florida. Gary has always been a big fan of video games, and he posted his comment as a joke talking as if he was playing one of his games.
The comment was flagged and reported to the FBI, who then told the Airforce Base which went into a lockdown. Gary had no idea that his comment had caused any harm until he saw someone else respond that the base was in a lockdown. Gary then deleted his comment and changed his username. Later that day, the FBI showed up to Gary’s door to question him about the comment. Gary admitted to writing the comment, but told them that it was a joke and did not realize it was a crime.
Gary was very cooperative and upset that his comment caused any harm, but was then arrested for the crime of written threats to kill or terrorist threats.
Gary was filed in juvenile court and had nothing in his background that would show that he is a threat, so we tried to get him into a diversion program but the prosecutors would not agree. Once we looked at the discovery, we realized that they could not prove the case at a trial. The prosecution did not have the right witness listed or the texts, and we would have won on rules of evidence rather than facts.
On the day of the trial, the prosecutor begged for a continuance, which the judge granted. We talked to the supervisor and tried to convince her to put Gary into a diversion program. She went to the head of her unit, who went behind her back and filed Gary as an adult. Now, Gary would have a mugshot and an adult charge of a second-degree felony with a maximum prison sentence of 15 years.
We were able to get Gary out of jail on a $1,000 bond and had him evaluated by an active shooter risk evaluator. The evaluator said that he did not think that Gary could do anything, but could not rule anything out. We thought that going to trial would be a tremendous risk, because we would now be arguing in front of a jury instead of just a judge. We ended up working with the prosecutor to get Gary out with juvenile sanctions (probation) until he is 19.
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Rossen Law Firm’s legal team understands what’s at stake when you’re charged with a crime in South Florida. We’re committed to defending you and protecting your rights. Our legal team is ready to create a customized strategy for your case to fight for the best possible outcome. We handle Criminal, DUI, Federal, Domestic Violence, Marchman Act & Baker Act cases, and more.
Rossen Law Firm