A man thought to be facing a felony DUI charge after hitting a woman with his car is now facing the far more serious charge of attempted murder. The Jacksonville man was originally arrested in October for the July incident where police thought a woman had been hit by a car, according to a report in the Florida Times-Union. He was charged with DUI causing serious injury, a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in state prison. But, in the month he was in jail on those charges, investigators said they now believe the man and the woman had been arguing and he dragged her from the vehicle as she tried to get out of the car, the newspaper reported. Now, the man is facing the additional charge of attempted second-degree murder with a weapon, with the car in this Jacksonville Violent Crimes Case qualifying as the weapon. This attempted murder charge is a first-degree felony with a maximum penalty of 30 years in state prison, so instead of looking at a maximum of 5 years in prison, he’s facing 35 if convicted of both charges in this Jacksonville Felony Case.
Once a person is arrested in a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Case, he or she appears before a judge shortly after the arrest. At that point the judge will set a bond in the case, which the defendant can either pay or otherwise be held in jail until the case resolves. The next step, however, is what’s called an arraignment. That’s when the defendant is formally charged and is asked to enter a plea in his or her Jacksonville Felony Case. In this Jacksonville Murder Case, the state increased the charges between the arrest date and the formal arraignment – which is typically a few weeks. The state uses this tactic in some Jacksonville Murder Cases to simply get a person behind bars while they continue to investigate the more serious charges.
The delay in the initial charge – from July to October – was likely waiting on blood-alcohol test results from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. It’s unclear at this point whether police were looking at the man on a murder charge all along, or if they received more information once the man was arrested on the DUI charge. The rules of criminal law procedure can be complicated and difficult to manage. Our Jacksonville Criminal Defense Attorney can walk you or your loved one through the process and fully investigate the case so you can make the best decision on how to proceed in the case.
If you or a loved one needs a criminal defense attorney in Jacksonville or the surrounding area, call The Mussallem Law Firm at (904) 365-5200 for a FREE CONSULTATION. Our Duval County Violent Crimes Attorney, Victoria “Tori” Mussallem, is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.