Lake Worth Beach
Get arrested in Lake Worth Beach? Whether you saw it coming or were blindsided by the charges, it’s critical to act quickly. While the Florida criminal justice system puts the greater burden of proof on prosecutors, it also equips them with a lot of tools and tactics that give them a distinct advantage. The best way to protect your rights and have a decent shot at the best possible outcome is to hire a private criminal defense lawyer.
As longtime Lake Worth criminal defense attorneys, our team at The Ansara Law Firm is committed to providing the highest quality representation for clients navigating the criminal system in South Florida’s 15th Judicial Circuit.About Lake Worth Beach Florida
Lake Worth Beach, formerly known as just “Lake Worth,” is an eastern-central city in Palm Beach County, just south of West Palm Beach.
Named after a nearby lagoon (now an estuary), the first non-indigenous settlers in Lake Worth were African American. Today, it’s among the most racially and ethnically diverse communities in Palm Beach County, following a wave of Caribbean and Central America flocking there in the 1980s.
The city has 17 neighborhood associations, and hosts a number of significant annual cultural festivals, including the renowned Street Painting Festival and one of the largest LGBTQIA+ Pride events in Florida. Historic downtown Lake Worth Beach is a popular draw for locals and tourists. The area is also home to several popular golf courses, playhouses and theaters, the Loggerhead Marinelife Center (dedicated to ocean and sea turtle conservation), beach bonfires, and more than 20 parks and recreation facilities.
Since rebranding itself as a beach town in 2019 (hence the name change), the city has begun heavily promoting tourism initiatives. This has included greater investments in law enforcement presence, with policing from both the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office and the Lake Worth Police Department. It should come as little surprise, then, that the crime rate has risen slightly in recent years.Lake Worth Beach Crime Statistics
According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, there were nearly 1,350 total index crimes reported to the Lake Worth Police Department in a single recent year. Those included 6 homicides, three dozen rapes, nearly 100 robberies, 230+ aggravated assaults, 130 burglaries, 740 thefts, and 100+ motor vehicle thefts. The clearance rate of those offenses, however, was 22.5 per 100. That means the department “cleared” or closed less than a quarter of those cases.
Crime rates in Lake Worth Beach have risen in recent years, often with spikes in certain types of offenses such as robberies, burglaries, and stolen vehicles.
The Lake Worth Beach arrest rate per 100,000 population is 3,707 - higher than the total for Palm Beach, as well as West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, and Delray Beach. The most common offenses were:
- Liquor law violations
- Drug arrests
- Simple assaults (a significant portion of which are classified as domestic violence offenses)
- Aggravated assaults
Local law enforcement is seeking the expanded use of body cameras for officers and deputies, so we expect in the future that will be a factor in a growing number of Lake Worth Beach criminal cases.Gun Crime Defense in Lake Worth Beach
Recent crime data also indicated an uptick in Lake Worth Beach gun crimes. These have included numerous fatal shootings. Among those:
- A 31-year-old man shot and killed after getting into an argument with an armed 19-year-old in a Lake Worth Beach coffee shop drive-thru.
- A 16-year-old shot and killed when another teen in the vehicle with him allegedly fired a gun accidentally.
- A man was found shot and killed behind a Lake Worth Beach church, allegedly following a fight over money.
- One 17-year-old Lake Worth High School student was allegedly shot and killed by his same-age peer near the Loxahatchee River. The defendant 17-year-old was charged as an adult with second-degree murder, armed robbery, and discharging a weapon into a dwelling.
Lake Worth Police report more than a quarter of all violent crimes in the city involve a firearm. That includes nearly all homicides and nearly one-third of all robberies and aggravated assaults.
As Lake Worth Beach firearm criminal defense lawyers, we represent defendants charged with:
- Carrying a Concealed Weapon
- Stand Your Ground
- Discharge of a Firearm in Public
- Shooting Into an Occupied Dwelling
- Felon in possession
- Gun Possession at Miami International Airport - Criminal Charges
- Gun Possession at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport
- Gun Possession at Palm Beach International Airport - Criminal Charges
We’re also skilled in representing defendants facing firearm enhancements with other crimes, such as domestic violence or assault. Using or even simply having a firearm while committing another crime will result in higher charges and penalties. Although Florida is generally considered a “gun-friendly” state, prosecutors are not soft when it comes to gun crimes.Drug Offense Arrests in Lake Worth Beach Florida
There were 350+ drug arrests in Lake Worth Beach in one year. That may not sound like a ton, but it’s more than West Palm Beach, which has 3.5 times more people.
Part of this can be attributed to the growing number of overdoses. Police report there have been anywhere from 270 to 250 drug overdoses in Lake Worth each year. Even with easing marijuana laws, drug arrests have been up. Depending on the substance, possession of even small amounts can have serious consequences.
No matter what charges you're facing in Lake Worth Beach, it's important to hire a skilled criminal defense attorney committed to fighting for your rights.
Contact the Palm Beach County criminal defense lawyers at The Ansara Law Firm, by calling (954) 761-4011 or toll-free at (954) 761-4011.