Clermont, FL asked in Criminal Law for Florida

Q: I reported a gun stolen yesterday and it has been stolen by my 16 yr old son. Do I have to press charges against him?

The gun has not been recovered as of yet but all info regarding the gun has been reported to lake county sheriff's department as lost/stolen. Trying to see what my liabilities are if I chose not to press charges against him. Or if I will be forced to do so.

Related Topics:
2 Lawyer Answers
Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
Answered
  • Freeeport, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: No, you probably don't have to press charges. But it might be a good idea to, when it's recovered, tell them it's no longer missing.

Tom Murphy
Tom Murphy
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Jacksonville, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: Depends what you mean by 'press charges'. The State will prosecute if they see fit, whether or not the victim wants the defendant prosecuted. For example, person A may punch person B in the face, and person B calls the police. Person B later decides he does not want the State to prosecute. The State may 'drop' the case, or they may choose to prosecute. Person A is just a witness in the State's case.

In your situation, once you call the police, it is up to the whether or not to prosecute. You may tell them you want to drop the case, yet they may prosecute anyway. Or, you may tell them you want to prosecute, and they may not, depending on a variety of circumstances.

Every case is different, no matter how similar they look. Each has its own unique set of facts and circumstances.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.