Areas of Practice


I Represent Officers Throughout Florida

I understand what it is like to be under an internal affairs investigation. During my 20 years as a police officer I have been there. I remember the feeling of dread knowing that I was alone in the interview and at the mercy of those who would decide my professional fate because I did not have knowledgeable representation to protect my rights. You do not, and should not, have to be alone. Contact me for experienced and knowledgeable legal representation. 

Florida Cop

Use Of Force

When a law enforcement officer or correctional officer is unjustly accused of excessive use of force, the results can be far-reaching. Accusations of excessive use of force are frequently reported in the media. As a result, just a mere accusation can destroy the reputation of the accused officer. Such an accusation can also subject that officer’s family to ridicule. There are also possible legal and professional consequences that can be triggered.

The accused officer may be disciplined or even terminated. Their officer certification could be in jeopardy and they may face criminal charges.

All of these outcomes are possible even when the officer did nothing wrong. In the current anti-officer environment, those who make the decisions to discipline or prosecute such cases are under ever-increasing pressure to go forward with such cases even when the use of force was justified.

If you are accused of excessive use of force, contact your Florida Cop Attorney Martin White for a free consultation.

An accusation of excessive use of force can trigger several components and processes both internal and external. The initial process that is triggered is an internal investigation, (internal affairs or inspector general).

The manner in which the internal investigation is conducted is governed by the Officers Bill of Rights. The rules that apply during that investigation will be addressed in another section of this page. If the officer is found to have committed such a violation that could trigger discipline.

When an officer has been found to have committed an excessive use of force, the officer can be exposed to being terminated and losing all pay and benefits for his or her family. If the officer wants to clear their name, they will have to challenge the termination in a disciplinary hearing. A simultaneous review will also be conducted by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, (F.D.L.E.).

A review of the internal investigation and the findings by F.D.L.E. will be conducted to determine if probable cause exists. That could trigger an administrative hearing to determine if the officer’s state certification should be revoked. Certification issues are not the only problem criminal accusations can also be in play.

            A criminal investigation could result in criminal charges being filed. Such a charge could lead to a criminal trial. If the officer is convicted of a crime as a result of the criminal charge related to excessive use of force, jail or prison sentences may be a possibility. The officer’s pension might also be in jeopardy if convicted of such a crime.

All of these outcomes are possible even if the officer did nothing wrong. Each of the above components and processes all have different rules. Choose an attorney who has experience in each process and understands the differences.

If you find yourself facing any of the above accusations, contact your Florida Cop Attorney Martin White for a free consultation.

Are you facing accusations or charges of excessive use of force? Do you want experienced legal representation to help you? I have over 20 years of experience as a law enforcement officer. I also have several years of experience as an Assistant State Attorney. I have provided legal representation to both law enforcement and correctional officers during their internal investigations, disciplinary hearings, certification inquiries and criminal cases. I have defended officer in criminal trials for charges that originated from an accusation of excessive use of force.

If you are under investigation, suspect that you may be or are facing charges of any kind that involve an accusation of excessive use of force, you have a right to be represented. Let my professional experience be to your benefit. Contact your Florida Cop Attorney Martin White for a free consultation.

Florida Cop

Internal Affairs Defense

Whether you are a Trooper, an agent, a deputy, a law enforcement or correctional officer, you have rights under the Florida Officers Bill of Rights.

The right to representation during an internal investigation is triggered when you are asked any question that could lead to discipline. These rights are triggered whether you are questioned by internal affairs or supervisory staff. I provide officers with internal investigation representation throughout Florida. 

Any time an officer is asked about their conduct by a member of their agency, and you reasonably feel that it could lead to discipline, that triggers the protections of the Law Enforcement and Correctional Officers Bill of Rights. It can only help you to be represented by an experienced attorney during your internal investigation.

  • You have the right to have representation present during an interview or interrogation.
  • You must be informed of the nature of the investigation prior to the interview or interrogation.
  • You must be informed of the names of all complainants prior to the interview or interrogation.
  • You must be afforded the opportunity to examine the evidence against you prior to the interview or interrogation.
  • You must not be subjected to offensive language, threats, or offers of reward.
  • You have the right to claim the rights provided by binding case law, including, but not limited to, the rulings in Garrity and Weingarten.

If the internal investigator violates your rights under the Florida Officer’s Bill of Rights there is a statutory process in place. That process is codified in Florida Statute 112.534.


The purpose of the process is to provide an avenue for the officer, or representative, to bring the violation to the attention of the investigator. If the investigator continues with the violation, the statute allows the officer and their representative to take steps to further correct the violation. If that does not solve the problem, the statute provides that the officer and/or representative can stop the interview or interrogation and request that a compliance review hearing be conducted.


The purpose of the compliance review hearing is to have the aggrieved officer select a member to serve on the compliance review panel, the agency select one, then those two select a third member. A hearing is conducted to determine if the investigator violated the officer’s rights under Florida Statute 112.532.

Florida Cop

Discipline Defense

Once a trooper, agent, deputy, police officer, or corrections officer is facing discipline in the form of being suspended or terminated, their rights don’t end there. The officer is to be afforded a hearing in which evidence and witnesses can be examined.

Depending on the agency and any union affiliation, there may be different avenues available to put on an officer discipline defense. At those hearings, it is best to have an experienced attorney.

If the officer is a member of a union, then the discipline may be challenged if it violated the collective bargaining agreement. The agreement will likely contain a process for challenging the discipline, which will likely end in a hearing in front of an arbitrator similar to a non-jury trial.

An attorney who is experienced in representing officers in arbitrations will provide your best chance at a positive outcome. Your Florida Cop Attorney Martin White has that experience.

Counties and municipalities generally have an appellate process in place for disciplined officers that are governed by their ordinances or other rules or regulations.

It is essential to locate those rules as soon as possible because some of those rules do not provide a lot of time to file the appeal. If the filing is late then there is more than a good chance that the appeal will be denied as untimely. Those rules also dictate how the appeal is to be filed and to whom.

Do not go it alone. You will need an experienced attorney to represent you.

If the disciplined officer is a state employee, such as an FHP Trooper, FDLE Agent, Fish & Wildlife Officer, and State Dept. of Corrections Officer, as a Career Service employee, an appeal can be made to PERC (Public Employee Relations Commission).

A hearing date will be set, and the preparation process begins. The hearing is normally conducted by a PERC hearing officer and is conducted much like a non-jury trial. Don't go through this process without experienced officer discipline defense in PERC hearings.

Florida Cop

Certification Defense

As law enforcement and correctional officers, we have all worked hard to obtain our law enforcement certification or correctional officer certification. During our careers, training and learning continue through mandatory retraining courses and other training and educational vehicles.

If you are accused of officer misconduct that could be considered to be not of “good moral character,” or other violations of Florida Statute 943.13, the officer certification that you have worked so hard to obtain and maintain may be in jeopardy. The State will take such an accusation seriously, and you should know also. Protect what you have earned with a professional officer certification defense.

If the decision to suspend or revoke an officer's certification to go forward is made, then there are two types of hearings that can follow. Those hearings are those that involve disputed issues of material fact and those that do not.

Be sure to contact your Florida Cop Attorney Martin White for a free consultation.

When the certification that allows you to work in your chosen profession is at stake, you are going to want someone who not only understands your position but is also knowledgeable about the process. You are going to need a professional officer certification defense. I have the background to provide the necessary representation. I represent officers in FDLE and Florida Criminal Justice and Standards Training Commission, (CJSTC), probable cause and administrative hearings throughout Florida. 

Florida Cop

Criminal Defense

When law enforcement or correctional officer is facing a criminal charge, the ramifications can reach much further than an average citizen. Not only does the officer face the criminal charge, but there can also be publicity that holds the officer out to public ridicule.

This can translate to political pressure for those in the prosecutor’s office to make an example of the officer. There can also be pressure to those who are involved in the officer’s career. Criminal accusations can be devastating to law enforcement or correctional officer's career.

You are going to need an experienced attorney to represent you during such a trying time. Contact your Florida Cop Attorney for a free consultation.

Take Accusations of Your Improper Conduct Seriously!

Do not take accusations of wrongdoing lightly, no matter how ridiculous they may be. Your career, freedom, and family's future may be in the balance. I represent officers throughout Florida for claims of improper and/or illegal conduct throughout Florida. 

Contact me for a free consultation and to take advantage of my knowledge and experience!