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Category Archives: Murder Defense

Jose Baez and Charlie Ely's Mother

Florida Woman Wins Freedom After Her Conviction for First-Degree Murder is Vacated

By The Baez Law Firm |

Charlie Ely was just eighteen years old when she was arrested and charged with first-degree premeditated murder in Marion County, Florida. In 2011, Charlie lived alone and allowed several other teens to move in with her. One of Charlie’s roommates shot and killed a fifteen-year-old boy at Charlie’s home. After the shooting, several other… Read More »


Florida City Commissioner Charged with Murder: Second Spotlight on Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law

By The Baez Law Firm |

Florida’s “stand your ground” law is once again under the spotlight as a Lakeland, Florida city commissioner (Michael Dunn) is now facing second-degree murder charges after shooting an alleged shoplifter at his store earlier this month (October). According to the footage obtained by police, the victim hid a hatchet from the store under his… Read More »


Justifiable Homicide & Use of Lethal Force in Florida

By The Baez Law Firm |

A new study indicates that Florida has experienced a 75 percent increase in justifiable homicides since its ‘Stand Your Ground’ law went into effect. Specifically, between 1999 and 2005, lawful homicides accounted for approximately 3.4 percent of all homicides in Florida (compared to an average of 8.7 percent between 2006 and 2015). The right… Read More »


Florida Man Faces Criminal Charges after Migrants Found Dead In Tractor-Trailer

By The Baez Law Firm |

On July 24th, the U.S. Lawyer’s Office for the Western District of Texas announced that a criminal complaint would be filed against 60-year-old Florida man James Matthew Bradley for his alleged involvement in the death of nine people who were found in a tractor-trailer in Texas. Nine were discovered dead at the scene; 39… Read More »


Proving Self-Defense in a Murder Case

By The Baez Law Firm |

On February 26, 2015, Susan Joy Jacobson murdered her common-law husband, Marvin Neal James, during what she claimed was another episode of domestic violence. According to Jacobson, James kicked her then pregnant belly. After a brief struggle, she got up and, in what she thought was a race, ran to get James’ gun. She… Read More »

Understanding Florida’s Second Degree Murder Charges

By The Baez Law Firm |

There are varying degrees of murder in Florida, including first degree murder, second degree murder, third degree murder, manslaughter, and aggravated manslaughter. Each is devastating, yet how the courts determine the degree of murder (and therefore, the punishment) all depends on the circumstances under which the individual was murdered, and the state of mind… Read More »

What to Do When You’re Considered an Accessory to Murder in Florida

By The Baez Law Firm |

Discounting third degree murder (unintentional manslaughter), murder in Florida is a crime punishable by the following under Florida state law: No less than 10 years for a murder of the second degree if the offender had no prior record; A minimum of 25 years if a firearms was used for a murder of the… Read More »

What Constitutes as Involuntary Manslaughter in Florida?

By The Baez Law Firm |

It happens in car accidents, self-defense cases, or reckless criminal negligence—a person will act in some haphazard way and with a wanton disregard for others, when they accidentally kill another human being. The negligent person will panic, certain that they are going to prison for life for murder. While the taking of another human… Read More »

Potential Changes Afoot For Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law?

By The Baez Law Firm |

Florida’s controversial “stand your ground” law came to national attention in February, 2012, following the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.  The “stand your ground” statute, sometimes seen as a defense to a charge of homicide or other illegal use of force, in fact offers a defendant complete immunity from prosecution on the basis… Read More »

Homicide in Florida

By The Baez Law Firm |

Homicide occurs when one person causes the death of another.  However, homicide is not necessarily the same thing as murder.  In fact, homicide is not always illegal.  Depending on the surrounding circumstances, homicide may be justified or excused. Read on to learn more. Different types of homicide Florida law recognizes several different types of… Read More »

Validity of Bite Mark Evidence Challenged

By The Baez Law Firm |

In 1987, Steven Chaney was convicted of murder in Dallas, Texas.  The evidence that sealed his fate was bite mark testimony offered by two forensic odontologists (bite mark experts).  According to the testimony, the murder victim had a bite mark on his arm that could only have come from Chaney.  Texas Monthly magazine reports… Read More »

Florida’s “10-20-Life” Sentencing Law

By The Baez Law Firm |

In August, 2010, Marissa Alexander of Jacksonville fired a gunshot into the wall near her allegedly abusive husband during a confrontation. According to the Florida Times-Union’s account, his children, then ages 10 and 13, were in the vicinity at the time – prosecutors charged that they were standing next to him, while Alexander maintained… Read More »

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