Tampa Attorneys defending Claims of Abuse of Elderly or Disabled Adults
It takes a patient, caring, and devoted individual to work with elderly or disabled adults. These people require assistance and often rely on their caretakers for essential daily tasks. There are times when a person tasked to work with an elderly patient or disabled adult may take advantage of their position and abuse the elderly or disabled. Unfortunately, the wrong person can be accused in cases of aggravated abuse. If you work with the elderly or disabled and have been accused of abuse or aggravated abuse, you will want a knowledgeable and experienced Tampa criminal defense lawyer to fight for your rights in the legal system.
You can be charged with either abuse or aggravated abuse of elderly or disabled adults and the laws defining these fall under Florida Statute 825.102.
Simple Abuse Involves
- the intentional infliction or an intentional act which may reasonably be expected to result in physical or psychological injury; or
- actively encouraging another to commit such act resulting in physical or psychological injury is considered abuse.
If the abuse does not rise to the level of causing great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement, then the penalty will be a third degree felony. This offense is punishable by up to five years in prison, five years probation and/or a fine up to $5,000.00. The severity of the penalty does depend on your prior criminal history, as well as the condition of the victim and the circumstances surrounding the act will also be taken into consideration.
Aggravated Abuse Involves
- Knowingly or willfully abusing an elderly or disabled person and in the process, causing severe bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement;
- Willfully torturing, intentionally punishing, or unlawfully caging an elderly or disabled individual; or
- Using a deadly weapon on an elderly person or disabled individual.
The penalty for being found guilty of aggravated abuse of an elderly or disabled person is a felony of the first degree in Florida. Being convicted of a first felony is punishable by up to thirty years in prison, thirty years probation and/or a fine of up to $10,000.00 or a combination of these penalties. The punishment will factor in previous criminal history, the victim’s condition and the circumstances surrounding the crime.
Contact All Family Law Group to learn more about how our Tampa aggravated abuse lawyers can help you. Call us now at 813-672-1900 or after hours at (813) 551-3903 or in the alternative contact us online to schedule an initial consultation with an experienced, knowledgeable Tampa aggravated abuse attorney.
Why Innocent People Can Get Charged with Aggravated Abuse of Elderly or Disabled Adults
There are situations when abuse is misreported and the wrong person is charged with the crime. For aggravated abuse, the person must be intentionally trying to harm the adult in their care. What looks like aggravated abuse may actually be due to the caretaker’s lack of training or experience at their particular job.
Another reason people are wrongly charged with aggravated abuse happens because the person in their care may be self neglected. According to a peer-reviewed article in the US National Library of Medicine, a person may be trained to respect the autonomy of an adult who still has the cognitive function to make decisions themselves. If an elder or disabled adult makes a choice that causes their own injuries, a caretaker may still be unfairly accused of abuse.
Family members of an elderly or disabled person may hire a caretaker to ease some of the stress from their lives. However, it can still be a very emotional time for the family of an adult who is not operating at full capacity. Sometimes these family members can be overwhelmed when their loved one becomes sick or injured. They may take this frustration and stress out on the caretaker and wrongfully accuse the caretaker of abuse.
Contact a Tampa Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
If you have been accused of aggravated abuse of an elder or disabled individual, contact the law firm of All Family Law Group. We will offer advice about your case as well as represent you in the courtroom. We have decades of experience to fully investigate your case and protect your rights. Send us an email or contact us by telephone at 813-672-1900 or after hours at (813) 551-3903 for a free initial consultation today.