Although you might not realize it, you can be punished under the law based
on the thoughts in your head. In fact, this is what essentially happens
when a person is convicted for a hate crime. In this blog, we explain
what can be considered a hate crime in the state of Florida.
What’s the Definition of a Hate Crime?
Crimes motivated by particular sets of prejudices are considered hate crimes.
These crimes are punished more severely than if the crime was committed
without prejudice. The purpose of hate crime laws is to deter racial
violence and other crimes that cause serious issues among societal groups.
Section 775.085 of the Florida Statutes, a crime becomes a hate crime if there is evidence
of “prejudice based on the race, color, ancestry, ethnicity, religion,
sexual orientation, national origin, homeless status, or advanced age
of the victim.” Because hate crimes are a higher class of crime,
prosecutors can pursue harsher penalties for defendants.
Additional penalties for hate crimes include:
- A longer period of incarceration
- Increased fines
- Extended periods of probation or community service
Because hate crime charges require prosecutors to build a case around your
personal beliefs, it is crucial to secure skilled legal representation
to make sure your rights are protected.
Criminal Defense Attorneys Serving St. Augustine
At Albaugh Law Firm, we are committed to handling criminal cases on behalf
of clients throughout the state of Florida. If you have been accused of
committing a hate crime, you should immediately consult with our legal
team to get started building your case strategy. Our experienced lawyers
are here to answer all of your questions and walk you through every aspect
of your case. We will use our extensive resources to fight for the justice
you deserve, and we are ready to put our skills to work for you today.
Call (904) 637-1839 to
request a free consultation with one of our
criminal defense lawyers in St. Augustine.