Orlando home is burned by a man with a prior record. Will this affect his sentence?

Feb 18, 2020 3:05 PM ET

When a person with prior records commits a crime that is classified as a felony, they should retain the best defense lawyer possible to avoid the possibility of spending years or even decades in jail.

A suspect who is facing charges related to arson and attempted murder at an Orlando home will have his previous crimes considered in sentencing.


Residential building is ignited in an attempt to harm those inside

The 49 year old male suspect started a residential fire on West Washington Street that caused two people to be taken to a local hospital’s trauma center with burn injuries.

Witnesses told police that on the Saturday night when the incident happened, they initially heard flowing water and smelled gasoline when they were disturbed in the middle of the night. They said they watched the suspect run down the stairs of the building and light the ground in the area on fire. One of the two victims was seen jumping out of a window several minutes later. The victim had to escape from a second story window with no other way out due to the size of the fire.

The suspect will have to answer for these actions in an Orange County Court. After he was arrested, he was charged by local prosecutors with multiple counts of arson and attempted murder.

The suspect also has a prior record that could greatly increase his sentence. He had previously tried to burn down a convenience store about a year earlier.

The local news released the suspect’s booking photo with their report. Videos from the scene showed a large fire truck spraying the second floor of the wooden home with a large amount of water. Pictures of the aftermath revealed that little was left of the structure aside from a frame after the blaze.


Why is retaining a lawyer important when facing the possibility of imprisonment?

Criminal defense attorneys are crucial parts of the justice system because they make sure the state can prove all charges beyond reasonable doubt. This is done to minimize the possibility that an innocent person will be incarcerated. Everyone who is charged has a constitutional right to present a defense case, regardless of the nature or severity of their crimes. 


How will his prior record be considered?

Judges are much less sympathetic towards defendants who already have a history of committing similar crimes. There are also sentencing guidelines in Florida that require defendants to spend more time behind bars if they are convicted.


Get help from an experienced lawyer

If you have been charged with any crime by the state of Florida, there is local help available. The Law Office of Donald K. Lykkebak assists clients in Orlando with superior defense representation.



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