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Falsely Impersonating an Officer

If accused of Falsely Impersonating an Officer, you need to know the:

Definition of Falsely Impersonating an Officer

Under Florida Statute 843.08, the crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer occurs when a person:

  1. Falsely assumes or pretends to be a law enforcement officer; [1] and
  2. Takes it upon himself or herself to act as a law enforcement officer. [2]

Enhanceable Elements

The crime of has two aggravating elements that, if alleged, can enhance the possible penalties. These aggravating elements are:

  1. Falsely Impersonating a law enforcement during the course of the commission of a felony; and
  2. If the commission of the felony results in the death or personal injury of another human being.

If the first element is alleged to exist, the crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer will be enhanced to a Second Degree Felony. If both elements are alleged to exist, the crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer will be enhanced to a First Degree Felony.

Penalties for Falsely Impersonating an Officer

The crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer is classified as a Third Degree Felony and is assigned a Level 2 offense severity ranking under Florida's Criminal Punishment Code.

If convicted of Falsely Impersonating an Officer, a judge can impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to five (5) years in prison.
  • Up to five (5) years of probation.
  • Up to $5,000 in fines.

Falsely Impersonating an Officer in the Commission of a Felony

The crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer in the Commission of a Felony is classified as a Second Degree Felony.

If convicted of Falsely Impersonating an Officer in the Commission of a Felony, a judge can impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to fifteen (15) years in prison.
  • Up to fifteen (15) years of probation.
  • Up to $10,000 in fines.

Falsely Impersonating an Officer in the Commission of a Felony Causing Injury or Death

The crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer in the Commission of a Felony Causing Injury or Death is classified as a First Degree Felony.

If convicted of Falsely Impersonating an Officer in the Commission of a Felony Causing Injury or Death, a judge can impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to thirty (30) years in prison.
  • Up to thirty (30) years of probation.
  • Up to $10,000 in fines.

Defenses to Falsely Impersonating an Officer

In addition to the pretrial defenses and trial defenses that can be raised in any criminal case, specific defenses to the crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer are:

Patently Ridiculous Personation

If a person's portrayal of a law enforcement officer is so patently ridiculous, such as a person dressed up on Halloween, then the person's conduct would not be considered criminal.

Contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Richard Hornsby

If you have been arrested or charged with the crime of Falsely Impersonating an Officer in Central Florida or the greater Orlando area, please contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Richard Hornsby today.

The initial consultation is free and I am always available to advise you on the proper course of action that can be taken.

References

  1. Lewis v State, 97 So.3d 285 (Fla. 4th DCA 2012).
  2. Azerzer v. State, 96 So. 3d 1123 (Fla. 5th DCA 2012)