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Aggravated Assault With a Deadly Weapon

weapons_180x120A 14-year-old boy facing multiple gun charges after he allegedly held up two people at gunpoint had his first appearance reset to today after no family members showed up for the court proceeding on Thursday.

Edgar L. Sorto, of Lake Worth, remains in the Palm Beach County Jail and is facing charges of robbery with a firearm, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and carrying a concealed weapon. Sorto is a documented MS-13 gang member, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office said

According to the PBSO, Sorto was seen allegedly pointing a black semi automatic handgun at two people on Sept. 26 around 12:30 p.m. The witness contacted police.

Dressed in blue shorts, blue shoes and red-checkered boxers with a white shirt wrapped around his neck, Sorto walked up to the two people in an open field near 7th Avenue and Boutwell Road in Lake Worth and demanded their property. Sorto grabbed a pocket knife attached to a belt clip on one of the victims and fled on foot toward the Palm Beach Mobile home park with two other males.

A probable cause affidavit states that Sorto and the two other males were detained after a short foot chase. Full story, source

Use of a deadly weapon during an assault constitutes aggravated assault. This applies whether or not the weapon causes physical injury to anyone. Basic assault does not require physical harm, but rather that the perpetrator behaves in a way intended to put someone in reasonable fear for their safety. Someone who does this by threatening the person with a deadly weapon commits aggravated assault because the fear involved is fear of more grievous injury.

Weapons classified as deadly weapons typically include things which could cause death or serious injury. Some weapons fit this bill including guns. Whether or not other objects constitute deadly weapons depends on the manner in which they are used in the assault. For example, a pocket knife is generally not considered a lethal weapon, but if held to a victims neck, it could be deadly. Source

An assault is an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act, to do violence to another person coupled with the apparent ability to do so, and the doing of some overt act that creates a well founded fear in the victim that such violence is imminent. An assault in Florida is a second degree misdemeanor. [Florida Statute 784.011].

An aggravated assault is an assault committed with a deadly weapon. An aggravated assault is a third degree felony punishable by up to five years in the state prison system, but it is subject to severe mandatory sentencing enhancements that can more than triple that time. [Florida Statute 784.021]. Where the deadly weapon is a firearm or destructive device, the crime or its attempt carries a mandatory minimum prison sentence of three (3) years. Where the firearm or destructive device is also discharged during the crime the mandatory minimum sentence is twenty (20) years. [Florida Statute 775.087]

If the involved firearm was a machine gun, or it is a semi-automatic firearm with a detachable box magazine that is capable of holding twenty (20) or more center fire cartridges – the mandatory minimum sentence is at least fifteen (15) years. If such firearm was discharged during the crime the mandatory minimum is at least twenty (20) years. If such firearm was discharged and caused death or great bodily harm, the minimum mandatory sentence is 25 years to life.

Carrying Concealed Weapons in Florida

In Florida, it is not against the law to carry electric weapons, chemical sprays, and stun guns for the purpose of self-defense as long as they are non-lethal.

According to Fla. Stat. § 790.01, it is illegal for an individual to have any concealed weapon on his or her body who does not have a Concealed Weapons Permit. This is considered a first degree misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to a year of imprisonment, and/or up to a $1,000 fine.

Under this statute, it is also illegal for anyone to carry a concealed firearm if he or she is not licensed to do so. This is considered a third degree felony, and is punishable by up to a 5 year prison sentence and/or up to a $5,000 fine. If the individual has been previously convicted of a violent crime two or more times, their prison sentence can be enhanced to ten years.

In Florida, individuals often carry weapons and firearms for safety.  However, even though this is a right afforded to them by the constitution, an individual has to first obtain a license that permits him or her to possess that weapon or firearm. If you have been arrested for illegal possession of a firearm, it is vital that you contact a knowledgeable weapon or firearms attorney who can advise you or the appropriate legal steps.

Palm Beach County Weapons and Firearm Charges Lawyer

Andrew D. Stine serves individuals who are facing gun or weapon charges in Palm Springs, North Palm Beach, Lake Worth, Tequesta, West Palm Beach, and the surrounding areas. As a qualified defense attorney, Stine has served over 5,000 clients throughout Florida. This experience has given him the legal prowess necessary to handle many different types of cases.

Contact Andrew D. Stine, P.A. at 561.880.4300 and set up a free consultation on your gun or weapon charge. The sooner you consult with Stine, the sooner he can begin preparing pretrial motions that could potentially have your charges reduced or dismissed.

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