More Criminal Legal Terms Defined

Self-Defense – The use of force to protect yourself from a threatened physical attack. This is called an affirmative defense from the criminal defense side of the table. This defense can be asserted in violent crimes in Jacksonville, including Aggravated Battery, Aggravated Assault, Domestic Battery, Simple Battery, and Fighting.

Self-Incrimination – The act or declaration that you admit guilt or connection with a crime.

Sentence – The judgment that a criminal court formally pronounces after finding a defendant guilty of criminal charges.

Concurrent Sentences – If you are found guilty of more than one crime, your sentences for both charges can run concurrent, which means they are served a the same time. For example, if you are convicted of both DUI and Resisting an Officer Without Violence, a judge could sentence concurrently to 5 days on the DUI and 10 days on the Resisting charge. Because you will be sentenced concurrently, the full amount of time you will serve is 10 days.

Consecutive Sentences – Separate sentences that are to be served back to back, not together. For example, if you are convicted of Possession of Marijuana and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, the judge could sentence you to 5 days on the pot charge and 20 days on the paraphernalia charge. You will serve the 5 day sentence first and then begin your 20 day sentence after.

Sixth Amendment – The constitutional amendment that guarantees, in criminal cases, the accused to a right to a public and speedy trial by a jury of your peers. You have the right to be informed of the charges against you, the right to confront the witnesses in the case, the right to have a criminal defense lawyer to represent you, and the right to compel witnesses who have information favorable to you.

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