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If someone you know has been charged with a homicide offense, so very much is at stake. If the charge is First Degree Murder, Florida law provides that, upon conviction, the person shall be sentenced to life without parole or receive the death penalty. These are the only two possible sentences. If the charge is Second Degree Murder, the client may still be facing a maximum of life in prison, with no opportunity for parole. If a firearm was used in the commission of the alleged crime, the 10-20-LIFE law provides for a mandatory sentence of 25 years to life in prison for Second Degree Murder, and even if a gun was not used, the judge can sentence anyone, even someone without a prior record, to the maximum. If the homicide is classified as Manslaughter, Florida law provides for a maximum sentence of fifteen years, unless the victim is a child or elderly adult, or a deadly weapon or firearm was used, in which case the maximum sentence is thirty years in prison. Even Vehicular Homicide and DUI Manslaughter usually carry a stiff prison sentence, with one hundred and twenty (120) “death points” added to the “scoresheet” to increase the client’s sentence as a result of the death. When the stakes are this high, retaining an experienced homicide attorney, who concentrates on murder cases, is simply the wise thing to do.

The choice of criminal defense lawyer to represent someone charged with such a serious crime is an extremely serious and important matter. Criminal Lawyers vary considerably in their qualifications, and in their level of experience and percentage of their practice devoted to homicide and murder defense. Given the relatively low number of homicides compared to crimes generally, there are relatively few criminal lawyers who have significant experience defending murder cases, which usually requires a broad base of knowledge in forensics, crime scene procedures, and the use of expert witnesses.

Attorney David A. Brener of the Law Offices of Brener and DeMine, P.A. has been practicing criminal law for 23 years. He is peer review rated “AV Preeminent” in Criminal Law by Martindale Hubbell, and is in the Bar Registry of Preeminent Lawyers, an achievement held by approximately 5% of attorneys in the nation. David Brener has had approximately one hundred and fifty felony jury trials, and devotes a significant portion (approximately 75%) of his caseload to the defense of murder cases. With the exception of death penalty cases, David Brener has been privately retained on all his pending homicide cases, and has handled dozens of murder and homicide cases during his career. David A. Brener is among one half of one percent (.05%) of Florida lawyers who are lead counsel qualified for death penalty cases pursuant to the Florida Supreme Court’s qualification standards. He has acted as lead counsel or co-counsel in approximately twenty (20) capital first degree murder cases, and has had no clients sentenced to the death penalty. He has tried murder cases in several different judicial circuits in the State of Florida, and has the ability and resources to try cases throughout the state.

David Brener is a long - standing member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the immediate past President of the Lee County Chapter of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the current Chairperson of the Criminal Law Practice Section of the Lee County Bar Association. He has published numerous articles about murder defense in criminal defense magazines, including “The Champion”, a publication of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, “Florida Defender”, a publication of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and “Res Gestae”, the Lee County Bar Association Magazine. Mr. Brener has been quoted in numerous media outlets about murder cases, including: the Miami Herald, the Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel, the Palm Beach Post, ESPN, the Washington Post, the New York Times, In Session (formerly Court TV), ABC 7, NBC 2, FOX 4, WINK 5, the Fort Myers News-Press, the Naples Daily News, the St. Pete Times, and the Associated Press (AP). David Brener has been a speaker on different aspects of criminal defense, including jury selection in capital murder cases, fingerprints and forensic evidence, and the use of expert witnesses.

Homicide lawyer David A. Brener has handled some of the region’s most high profile murder cases, including State of Florida v. Kemar Johnston, the alleged “Ringleader of the Cash Feenz”(unanimous double life jury recommendation), State of Florida v. Raul Zavala (confession suppressed), State of Florida v. Richard Elkins (death penalty waived), State of Florida v. Iris Moreland (death penalty waived), State of Florida v. Mohammed Javed (search warrant suppressed; mistrial), State of Florida v. Aderian Carey (charges dismissed on defense motion), and others. Before withdrawing based on an unavoidable conflict, Mr. Brener persuaded the court in the case involving the murder of football star Sean Taylor to issue a gag order to police, prosecutors, and other defense counsel, and to seal the defendants’ own statements from public disclosure. Mr. Brener has experience with “cold cases”, and has represented people charged with murder in Collier, Charlotte, Lee, Hendry, Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties. He has handled almost every type of homicide case, including shootings, stabbings, strangulations, domestic, robbery-homicide, felony murder, premeditated murder, double murder, sexual assault-murder, child-murder, arson-murder, blunt trauma murder, vehicular homicide, accidental homicide, justifiable homicide, excusable homicide, intoxicated murder, heat-of-passion homicide, witness-elimination murder, gang-related murder, and murder-for-hire.

Attorney Thomas E. DeMine is a former prosecutor, who has prosecuted those charged with murder. As such, he has valuable insight into the strategy and tactics of the prosecution in homicide cases, and frequently co-counsels the defense of the Firm’s clients.

Together, Brener and DeMine make an aggressive and experienced homicide defense team.

If someone you know has been charged with homicide or murder, call the Law Offices of Brener and DeMine, P.A. The initial consultation is free, and jail appointments are available, usually the same day.

Put our experience to work. Experience really does matter. You’ll be glad you did.